The Pekin baseball team pounded out 27 hits Saturday in a 9-3, 14-5 non-conference doubleheader sweep at Illinois Valley Central.
That was impressive. But not the most impressive accomplishment by the Dragons on a windy day in Chillicothe.
In 14 innings on the mound, Pekin pitchers struck out 18 and didn’t walk anybody. Zero. Zilch. Nada.
Cade Edmiston went six innings in the opener. He stuck out five and gave up five hits.
Evan Pogioli went six innings in the nightcap. He fanned eight and scattered 10 hits.
Nathan Righi pitched the final inning in each game and struck out five of the six batters he faced.
“Eighteen strikeouts. No walks. Wow,” said Pekin coach Larry Davis after adding up the statistics.
There were plenty of hitting highlights for Pekin (3-1), of course.
Skyler Coryell broke out of an 0-for-6 mini-slump to begin the season with two hits and four RBIs in the opener.
He had a two-out, two-run double in the fourth that was followed by a two-run single by Cole Russell, and a two-out, two-run single in the fifth.
Down 2-1 after three innings, the Dragons scored four runs in the fourth and three in the fifth and moved in front 8-2.
Russell finished with three hits and two RBIs. Braden Lavin had a double and a triple for Pekin and Michael Ellwanger drove in two runs.
The Dragons made good use of their 15 hits in the nightcap, scoring 14 runs. IVC chipped in with four errors.
Pekin led 8-5 after three innings and kept the Grey Ghosts (1-5) off the scoreboard the rest of the way.
Pogioli helped his cause at the plate with three hits including a double and three RBIs.
Braden Shane (three hits, three RBIs), Blake Thompson (three hits, double), Zach Peak (two hits, two RBIs), Bryson Swift (two hits) and Jordan Rudd (two hits) also contributed to Pekin’s attack.
“I give our kids a lot of credit,” Davis said. “They had played only two games before Saturday and they played well. We played a lot of kids in the second game who don’t normally play and they came through with 14 runs.”
The Dragons opened their Mid-Illini Conference schedule Monday at Dunlap, which wasn’t impacted by the Easter Sunday snowstorm.
The teams are scheduled to play at 4:15 p.m. Wednesday at Pekin’s Harry Anderson Field in what would be the Dragons’ home opener.
Pekin was supposed to play Peoria Notre Dame at home Thursday, but the game was postponed because of sloppy field conditions caused by snow and rain.
“We’ll try to make up that game,” Davis said.
Steve Stein can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @SpartanSteve.