WIC streak is over; Vikings lose to Indian Creek

Apr. 24—When the game's only run is scored by a player who had struck out, odds are that a pitchers' duel has taken place.

And that was the case Wednesday evening at Dick Ballinger Field.

West Vigo's Jacob Likens pitched a six-hitter with no walks and seven strikeouts and needed just 77 pitches in seven innings, but he turned out to be the hard-luck losing pitcher. Indian Creek's Carter Modlin delivered a three-hitter (two of them bunts), walking one and fanning 10, and the visiting Patriots beat the Vikings 1-0.

It was the first Western Indiana Conference loss for West Vigo since 2019, and left the visitors in first place with a 4-0 conference record so far this spring.

"Just a good pitchers' duel," coach Culley DeGroote of the Vikings said. "[The Patriots are] a legitimate ballclub. [Modlin] pitched against us in the sectional last year and it was 0-0 after five innings [before West Vigo won 2-0], so we knew what we were up against."

Likens gave up four hits in the first four innings, but he faced just nine batters in the first three frames because he picked a runner off first base in the first inning and catcher Brandon Dailey did the same in the second inning.

Two fourth-inning hits put runners at first and third with one out, but Viking shortstop Jayce Noblitt fielded a hot smash on a short hop and turned it into a double play to end the inning and keep the game scoreless. West Vigo's only baserunner to that point was Grayson Porter, who dropped a one-out single into center field in the second inning.

Indian Creek's leadoff batter in the top of the fifth reached base when his third strike was a curveball that bounced to the screen, however. He was bunted to second and scored on an opposite-field double, and the visitors had the run they needed.

Porter led off the bottom of the inning with a bunt single, but again the Vikings didn't get a runner to second. And in the bottom of the sixth, a bunt single by Ryan Cobb and a throwing error on Hunter Cottrell's bunt had runners at first and third with one out, but Modlin escaped by getting a strikeout and inducing a popup.

"Good, clean baseball," DeGroote summarized. "They took advantage of one of their opportunities, and we didn't take advantage of ours.

"We started six underclassmen and we're playing a lot better the last week or so."

INDIAN CREEK (AB-R-H-RBI) — Turner 3b 3-0-1-0, Steinway ss 3-0-1-0, Bragg c 3-0-1-0, Modlin p 3-0-1-0, Harden 1b 3-1-1-0, Harmon 2b 2-0-0-0, Laymon 2-0-1-1, Mann lf 2-0-0-0, Bohall rf 2-0-0-0. Totals 23-1-6-1.

WEST VIGO (AB-R-H-RBI) — Dailey c 3-0-0-0, Cottrell 2b 2-0-0-0, Skelton dh 3-0-0-0, Hedden 3b 0-0-0-0, Pugh 1b 3-0-0-0, Gr.Porter cf 3-0-2-0, Likens p 3-0-0-0, Deighton rf 2-0-0-0, Michael pr 0-0-0-0, Noblitt ss 3-0-0-0, Cobb lf 2-0-1-0. Totals 24-0-3-0.

Indian Creek 000 010 0 — 1

West Vigo 000 000 0 — 0

E — Likens, Dailey, Bragg. LOB — IC 2, WV 5. 2B — Laymon. CS — Guyer (Indian Creek courtesy runner), Modlin, Harden. SH — Harmon, Cottrell.

Indian Creek IP H R ER BB SO

Modlin (W) 7 3 0 0 1 10

West Vigo IP H R ER BB SO

Likens (L) 7 6 1 0 0 7

T — 1:44.

Next — West Vigo (5-7, 3-1 WIC) plays Thursday at Edgewood. Indian Creek is 7-1 and 4-0.