Bombers take close victory over Railroaders

Photo by Jimmy Lafakis/The Herald
Dubois County Bombers first baseman Mason White (20) follows through on a swing in the second inning of Thursday evening’s game against the Fulton Railroaders in Huntingburg. The Bombers earned a 4-3 victory over the Railroaders.


HUNTINGBURG — Intermittent rain patterns swept around Southwest Indiana throughout Thursday afternoon, but the clouds cleared before Dubois County (4-1) faced Fulton in an Ohio Valley League contest on Thursday evening. The Bombers worked diligently to lift the tarps and chalk the field before taking on the Railroaders in their second home game of the season. 

Kevin Butler’s late-inning heroics helped Dubois County earn the tight 4-3 win over the Railroaders. Butler’s go-ahead single in the bottom of the eighth inning boosted the Bombers in their victory. 

“Kevin brings a lot to the table,” Dubois County head coach Travis LaMar said. “He’s swinging it well. He’s seeing the ball. Obviously, being a catcher, he has that vantage point all day, every day. He came up big for us when we needed it.” 

Neither team tallied any runs in the first frame. The Bombers allowed runners to reach the corners with two outs in the top of the first inning, but starting pitcher Brayden Childress escaped the jam after forcing a flyout to right field. Dubois County went down in order in its half of the inning. 

Fulton threatened in the top half of the second inning, but Childress walked away unscathed after loading the bases with two outs. The Bombers did not scratch across a run after reaching base for the first time. 

Dubois County solved Fulton southpaw hurler Jordyn Naranjo in the bottom of the third inning. With runners at first and third, Southridge alum Tucker Schank drove in the game’s first run with a hard grounder. Mason White followed with a deep two-out double in the left-center alley. 

“It’s always good to score first,” LaMar said. “You want to try to score early. I thought both pitchers were doing a really good job of keeping hitters off balance. It may not have been the cleanest game, but it’s always good when you can get ahead and obviously try to keep a lead as long as you can.” 

The Bombers’ 2-0 advantage remained intact after Childress thwarted another two-out threat in the top of the fourth. Dubois County did not score in the bottom of the fourth inning. 

The sun peeked through the looming clouds as the top of the fifth began. The Railroaders reached third base with two outs, but the Bombers did not allow any runs to cross the plate. 

Defense ruled the roost until the bottom of the sixth. Brett Pfaadt increased the Bombers’ lead to 3-0 with a sharp RBI single into left field. He advanced to second base on the throw home, but Dubois County did not push any more runs across the dish. 

The insurance run paid off in the seventh frame, as Dubois County limited the Railroaders to another scoreless inning. When the home fans rose for the seventh-inning stretch, the Bombers held a 6-2 advantage in the hits column. 

Dubois County relief pitcher Tyler Wheeler exited the game after tossing two scoreless innings. Wheeler racked up two strikeouts and issued just one walk in his productive outing. 

The Railroaders broke free for three runs with two outs in the top of the eighth. The Bombers refocused and shut down Fulton’s rally with a runner on third base. 

Pfaadt continued his hot stretch with a two-out base knock into left field in the bottom of the eighth. He made a heads-up play and swiped second base on an errant pickoff attempt. 

Butler came through in the clutch when his number was called. He was thrown out trying to advance to second base, but the damage was done. His hit brought the game to its final score. 

Carter Stamm shut the door with a scoreless ninth frame. After the 2020 Jasper grad earned the save for the Bombers, the players greeted fans along the third-base line. 

“That’s what Carter has been doing,” LaMar said. “He’s going to be a huge factor for us this year. I think what he brings to the table is going to be something really fun to watch. I think he’s got an opportunity to really play a big role for us. I’m really looking forward to what he is going to do.”  

Dubois County plays the Henderson Flash Friday in Henderson. The Bombers dropped a 10-1 decision to the Flash on Monday. 

“Henderson is always a good opponent,” LaMar said. “Both teams always compete. We kind of owe them one a little bit. They got us the last time we went down there. We’re going to hopefully be able to put together a better nine-inning game. You hope to come away with a win every night.” 

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