By Rob Kiser
Call Sports Editor
Piqua shortstop Taylor Baumeister didn’t mind a little ribbing from his teammates about the wind Saturday night at Hardman Field.
And, truth be told, it had little to do with his first varsity home run.
The Piqua senior hit a towering two-run homer to centerfield in the second inning to help propel the Indians to a 7-1 win over Graham Saturday night.
“So far, it is my only one (varsity home run),” Baumeister said with a smile. “I knew I hit it pretty good. When I got to first base, coach told me to keep on running so I did. Roll Tribe.”
Piqua Jared Askins was not surprised by the homer.
“Taylor (Baumeister) has some pop in his bat,” Askins said. “We have been waiting for him to get going. Honestly, I don’t think the wind had anything to do with it. That was a no-doubter from the time it left the bat.”
And the timing couldn’t have been better.
Piqua had scored a run in the first when Michael Anderson reached on an error and starting pitcher Cameron Gordon singled him in.
Derrick Gullett had singled to start the second, setting up Baumeister’s blast.
“That was a huge hit at the time,” Askins said. “It was (a 1-0 game). Having been on the other end, I know that can be deflating sometimes when someone hits a home run like that.”
Noah Gertner reached on an error and hustled around the bases from second when a throw went into centerfield, making it 4-0.
Piqua made it 7-0 in the third, with a sacrifice fly by Baumeister — sandwiched in-between RBI singles by Derrick Gullett and Levi Hess.
“We have done that about every other game,” Askins said about the fast start. “And all our pitchers did a nice job.”
Cam Gordon, Baumeister and Austin Reedy combined on a three-hitter, striking out six and walking just one.
The Indians were also solid on defense, led by a “web-gem” in centerfield by Jacob Teague, making a diving catch on the hill.
The only Graham run was an unearned one in the fourth.
Connor Burr singled and scored on a misplayed pop-up with two outs.
“None of those guys is probably going to work again until Thursday,” Askins said. “We have some other guys that are going to get some much needed innings.”
Anderson and Gullett both had two hits for Piqua, with Baumeister picking up three RBI.
The Indians, 4-3, will play at Trotwood-Madison Monday and host the Rams on Tuesday.
Graham 000 100 0 — 1 3 6
Piqua 133 000 x — 7 8 1
WP-Gordon. LP-McNeal. HR-Piqua: Baumeister. Records: Piqua 4-3, Graham 2-3.