Clear Lake’s bats have been as hot as the weather. The Lions outscored their opponents 47-14 in three wins last week. They are now 14-3 overall and rated number four in Class 3A this week.
Statistics back up the lofty Lion rating. Currently the teams’ batting average is the second highest in the state (3A) at .368, and senior Ozzie Adams is second in the state individually in batting average at .538. Adams is also third in the state (3A) in RBIs with 29, and Tanner Truesdell is seventh with 24. Michael Keeran leads the class with 32 runs, while Adams is tied for third with 29 runs. Adams also leads the entire state in slugging percentage at 1.077.
The Lions are slated to play eight games this week in six days, with a home game tonight (Wednesday, June 20). The Junior Varsity will play first at 5:30 p.m.
CL 12, Humboldt 6
The Lions hosted Humboldt in a North Central Conference tilt Monday, June 11, and posted a 12-6 win.
“This was a really nice win for our kids coming off of a tough loss on the Friday before,” said Coach Seth Thompson, whose team sits atop the NCC with Bishop Garrigan. Both teams have just one loss in the league, but the Lions hold the edge with a win over Garrigan.
The Lions got out of a first inning jam defensively with a huge double play. The effort held the Wildcats to just one run in the opening frame. Then the Lions roared back with five runs of their own for a 5-1 lead after one. Four more in the second inning had Clear Lake in control, 9-1. However Humboldt kept the pressure on with two runs in the third and three in the fourth.
Ozzie Adams picked up the win, strolling out seven and walking two in five innings pitched. He gave up six runs on nine hits.
“Ozzie did a nice job of battling his way through five tough innings against a good hitting ball club in Humboldt. We needed someone to step up and take the mound for us when our scheduled starter (Gavin) couldn’t go, and Ozzie didn’t hesitate to take the ball coming off of two days rest,” said Thompson.
Jerry Kockler relieved Adams in the sixth and struck out two.
“Jerry was outstanding in relief and our top four hitters carried the load offensively, going 11-16 collectively. Jake Kockler has been on a tear offensively, and kept that up tonight going 4-5.”
Michael Keeran, Adams and Tanner Truesdell followed Jake Kockler in the lineup. Keeran and Adams had two hits apiece, while Truesdell had three in four trips to the plate. Both of Adams’ hits were doubles and one of Truesdell’s was a triple. The blasts by Adams and Truesdell each provided the Lions with three runs.
CL 17, WC 7
What seemed like a nice relaxing night of baseball before the game started turned very quickly into something very different, reported Coach Seth Thompson following Clear Lake’s 17-7 win on the road Wednesday night.
“Sometimes umpires, either by intent or just by having a bad night, give players and coaches an excellent chance to test their resolve and work on dealing with adversity, and this turned out to be one of those nights. Whether or not the head coach passed the test is a matter of debate, but I couldn’t have been more impressed with how our players handled themselves.”
Even after seeing Webster City score seven runs in the first to jump out to a 7-2 lead, I felt like there was no player in our dugout or on the field that panicked or didn’t have full confidence our team was going to come back and win the game despite the hole they were in and what was happening around them,” said Thompson.
The coach praised pitcher Jerry Kockler for his performance in a tough situation and his ability to get his defense off the field. Kockler came in after freshman hurler Brock Adams had a tough start. He pitched five and one-third innings, striking out nine and walking two. Webster City got two hits off Kockler and four off Adams.
The Lions steadily fought back, scoring two runs in the second, one in the third and four in the fourth to take the lead, 8-7. Four runs in the fifth and five in the sixth blew the game open.
Michael Keeran led the Lions with three hits, including a double. He finished with five RBI. Jake Kockler, Ozzie Adams and Tanner Truesdell each had two hits. Kockler and Truesdell earned three and two RBI respectively.
“For these kids to not just come back and win but come back and win in 10-run fashion on the road in conference play I think speaks volumes about the resolve of our players and was fun to watch,” added the coach.
CL 18, FC 1
Ozzie Adams has had many memorable performances since starting on the varsity team as an eighth grader. But Thursday night the senior had one for the record books. He went four-for-four at the plate, including three home runs, and knocked in seven runs in the Lions’ 18-1 victory over Forest City.
“This was a special night of baseball for our team and individually for Ozzie,” said Coach Seth Thompson. “For our team to come out and win as convincingly as they did against a winning team on the road was great to see. To see our offense collectively go 16-27 was pretty awesome, especially since they only ended up with three innings of batting.”
But the story of the game was Adams, who collected his 200th career hit in historic fashion-- on his third home run of the game and second of the inning.
“Only 44 players ever to