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What to make of 53 runs by Union (Dugger)?Posted Wednesday, April 16, 2008, at 9:45 PM
As a guy fascinated with numbers, I could not help but be intrigued and almost dumbfounded after receiving a call Tuesday night from Union (Dugger) High School baseball coach Clarence Johnson.
Not that I was surprised that he called, like I would be if certain coaches tried to report their results, but I was flabbergasted with the information that he had to submit.
His Bulldogs had defeated Eminence 53-0 in a baseball game at Dugger. That's right, 53 runs in a five-inning contest. The five innings is kind of misleading because Union (Dugger) batted around four times in the first inning and led 31-0. They tacked on 19 more runs and were ahead 50-0 after two innings. The 31 runs broke the mark of 23 runs in a inning set by Whiting just last season.
The Bulldogs finished with a state-record 40 hits. The 53 runs only tied the record for runs in a game that Cowan had last year.
They had 63 total bases, including 13 doubles, three triples and two home runs, which was the most ever in a single-game record.
The Bulldogs also set records for extra-base hits in a game (18) and inning (11).
Blane Boyd's eight runs scored was a new state record, breaking the old mark of seven by Twin Lakes' Phil Poze and the Cowan duo of Jake O'Conner and Kirby Campbell.
O'Conner and Campbell amassed their total when Cowan put up 53 runs a year ago. O'Conner had 15 RBIs in that game, which is still tied for most ever in a game with Mike Wilhelm, who drove in 15 runs for Southwood in a game in 1992.
Bulldog Wesley Marshall hit for the cycle -- single, double, triple and home run -- in that historic first inning. I couldn't find a record for the cycle, although to bat four times in an inning is pretty rage, let alone hit for the cycle.
Marshall finished with eight RBIs and six runs scored.
All of these gaudy numbers from a baseball program that has not had a .500 season in over two decades. In fact, it was recently that the Bulldogs had 20 runs scored against them in a single inning.
When Vincennes Lincoln scored 51 runs, the third most ever in a single game in Indiana High School Baseball history, in a defeat of Vincennes Rivet some 12 years ago, critics said the Alices might have run up the score on the Patriots.
But there is no way that you could say Union (Dugger) ran the score up the on Eels, who like the Bulldogs have never had much success in baseball.
The Bulldogs have never won a baseball sectional championship and Eminence has one just one -- a Class A title at Indianapolis Ritter three seasons ago.
If Shakamak or Linton-Stockton scored that many runs against Eminence in a baseball game, you might be inclined to think they did not call off the dogs. But that is because the Lakers and Miners are traditionally some of the best area baseball teams.
Last year, SHS defeated EHS 15-1. They scored a season-high for runs in a 21-1 victory over White River Valley.
The Linton-Stockton school record for runs in a game in 29, which came back in 2000.
You couldn't have asked Johnson to put in his subs because he only has 12 players on his team. If my math skills still serve me correctly, that means he played all three of his substitutes as all 12 players got at least one hit.
Needless to say, I was bowled over by these numbers. They still boggle the mind, at least mine anyway.
I have been trying to come to grips with this and as yet don't have any answers or know how to put it into perspective.
The Bulldog basketball team averaged just less than 52 points per game last season. Only seven occasions, they scored fewer than 53 points in a game.
Where would you even begin to rank the 53 runs as far as an accomplishment or single-game accomplishment by an area sports team sports in the the regular-season?
No matter if you think it was a good thing, bad thing, a fluke or don't care, the Union (Dugger) baseball team had one of the most prolific offensive nights in the history of Indiana High School baseball.
Congratulations to Bloomfield graduate Jon Neill, who recently completed his athletic career at Franklin College.
Neill, who played in 110 games for Franklin during his four seasons, played in all 28 games this season. He helped them to an 18-10 mark.
The 6-4 guard-forward played just over 26 minutes per game this season. He averaged almost six points per game. He made 24 of 70 3-pointers and connected on 46 of 65 free throws (71 percent).
He also averaged 2.3 rebounds per game and had 51 assists and 16 steals.
For his career, Neill, the son of Garry and Kathy Neill, scored 789 points, an average of 7.2 points per game.
Neill is majoring in secondary education and life sciences.
B.J. Hargis is sports editor of the Greene County Daily World. He can be reached at (812) 847-4487, ext. 12 or at email@example.com.
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