A week can make a big difference.
After opening up the season with a pair of losses of a combined score of 24-8, the Milton High School baseball team captured three of four wins this past week. The Red Hawks outscored their opponents in their wins by a combined total of 28-8.
Milton picked up its first win of the season on Tuesday, April 2, with a 13-3 victory over Badger South foe Edgewood at Milton High School.
“It was a great game, the bats really came alive tonight,” Milton head coach Kris Agnew said.
Three days later on Friday, the Crusaders got the better end of the Red Hawks with a 10-3 victory at Warner Park in Madison.
Then on Saturday, April 6, Milton swept Sauk Prairie in a double header in Sauk Prairie, first with a 4-2 win and then with a 11-3 triumph.
Milton 13, Edgewood 3
The Red Hawks jumped out to 5-0 after two innings thanks to a two-run first and a three-run second.
Freshman Keegan Knutson and junior Colin Schuetz scored off an error in the bottom of the first inning.
In the bottom of the second, junior Fletcher Terrill hit a two-run home run to continue to build the Red Hawk lead.
Senior Memphis Moore grounded into a fielder’s choice to score freshman Jack Campion and increase the Milton lead to 5-0.
Edgewood got its first run of the game in the top of the third, while Milton was held scoreless in the third and fourth.
After giving up two runs in the top of the fifth, the Red Hawks ended the contest with an eight-run fifth, which enabled the 10-run rule at 13-3.
Terrill batted in a game-high five RBIs in the Red Hawks’ first win.
“Fletcher Terrill had a big night at the plate,” Agnew said.
Sophomore Evan Jackson bounced back in a big way on the mound. Jackson started in Milton’s season-opening game against Janesville Craig, pitching just two innings and surrendering three earned runs.
Against the Crusaders, he pitched all but one out (4.2 innings), allowed three earned runs and struck out four batters.
“It was really a bounce back,” Agnew said. “I knew he couldn’t wait to get back out there after the way things went in his first outing.”
Ethan Haefner collected a team-high three hits for Milton.
After committing six errors in the first two games, Milton also cleaned up things in the field. The Red Hawks went error free against Edgewood.
“The biggest improvement tonight was defensively and clutch hitting,” Agnew said. “We made routine plays and took advantage of our opportunities with runners on base.”
Edgewood 10, Milton 3
Edgewood got to Milton early and often in the team’s second game of the year. The Crusaders piled on 10 runs in the bottom of the first inning to take a 10-1 lead.
“We took a step backward against Edgewood on Friday night,” Agnew said. “We just didn’t come out of the gates very strong, obviously giving up 10 runs in the first inning.”
Although the Red Hawks would hold Edgewood scoreless the rest of the contest, the big first inning would prove to be too much to overcome.
Knutson was involved in all three of the Red Hawk scores. He scored two runs and collected one RBI.
Schuetz picked up a pair of hits in the defeat.
Haefner tossed two scoreless-innings on the mound for Milton.
Milton 4, Sauk Prairie 2
Milton went into the top of the seventh inning deadlocked with Sauk Prairie at 2-2.
However, a timely at bat from Moore changed the tides. With two outs, Moore hit a ground ball and was able to reach base thanks to an error. Charlie Terrill and Schuetz both scored on the play.
“The biggest thing is that Memphis Moore doesn’t get a hit in the books, where he drove in two runs on an error, but to not strike out in those situations and to put the ball in play and put pressure on the other team is really important,” Agnew said.
Jackson, who pitched the final two innings, shut the door in the bottom of the seventh. He retired all three of the batters he faced in the inning and notched a pair of strikeouts in the process.
“Pitching and defense made the difference in the game,” Agnew said.
Campion did most of the heavy lifting on the mound however. The freshman pitched five innings and allowed just two earned runs. He gave up three hits and struck out a trio of batters.
Charlie Terrill went 2 for 2 in the Red Hawk win.
Milton 11, Sauk Prairie 3
With Milton up 6-2 going into the top of sixth inning, the Red Hawks blew the game open with a five-run sixth.
The inning was highlighted with a three-run home run by junior Jordan Sitvarius.
Stivarius finished with a pair of hits and three runs in the game.
“Jordan Stivarius is just the ultimate team player,” Agnew said.
“He has a great attitude, he’s a very versatile player,” Agnew added.
Eli Hillmann pitched three innings and gave up no runs.
“Sauk was just a really good day from the standpoint of execution of some of the things we’ve been working on in practice,” Agnew said.
The Red Hawks played a Badger South game against Fort Atkinson at Jones Park on Tuesday, April 9, but results were not available by publication time.
Milton (3-3, 1-1) will play the Blackhawks again on Thursday in Milton. First pitch is set for 4:30 p.m.