The ICC Indians went into their Saturday game with a one game lead over the Northwest Rangers. It was a playoff atmosphere at Crubaugh Field when the Rangers and the Indians went head-to-head.
B.J. Johnson, who is 6-0 on the year, took the hill in game one for the Indians and got some run support early.
Clint Alford led off the bottom of the first with a solo shot to left center, and Justin Bryant hit a two run homer to left two batters later.
The Indians had a 3-0 lead as Johnson was throwing a no hitter. but in the top of the fourth, the Rangers broke up the no hitter on a two out double to right. The Rangers loaded the bases and pushed across a run on an infield hit but trailed 3-1.
The Indians were unable to score in the bottom of the inning and after giving up a double, hitting a batter and a bunt base hit, Johnson was pulled in the fifth.
Byant came in to pitch, but the Rangers tied the game at 3-3 on a passed ball and a RBI single to left.
The game remained tied as neither team could plate a run, and in the top of the sixth, the Rangers added fuel to the fire in the intense division game.
A base runner for Northwest slid hard into second on a forced out, and the Indians were not happy.
In the bottom of the sixth, Dustin Lunn stepped up the plate and crushed the ball over the center field fence for a home run. While rounding first Lunn pointed to the right fielder, who was the Ranger who slid into second in the top of the inning.
The home run energized the Indians, and they shut down the Rangers in the top of the seventh to pick up the 4-3 victory and extend their lead to 2 games. Johnson didn't get a decision in the game and remains 6-0 on the year.
In game two, the Indians trailed early as Northwest plated 4 runs in the first. Then Lunn hit a two run homer in the bottom of the first to cut the lead in half.
Lunn also hit a three run homer in his next at bat, and the Indians tied the game at 8-8.
The Indians battled the entire second game and walked away with an 11-9 victory to extend their division lead to 3 games.
The Indians travel to Booneville today to take on the rival Northeast Tigers at 1 p.m.
The game will be broadcast on FM95 (95.7) beginning at 12:40 p.m.