By JOE WILLIAMS
COLUMBUS -- While Patrick Henry may have looked a bit more like the Bad News Bears with mohawks and bleach-blonde haircuts, they played like the Columbus Clippers.
The Patriots picked up the Division IV state baseball title Saturday night with a 10-0, five-inning win over Berlin Hiland at the home of the Clippers, the New York Yankeess Triple-A affiliate's Cooper Stadium.
The Patriots wasted little time putting runs on the board.
Luke George got things going in the first with a walk and moved to third on a single by starting pitcher Kyle Reese. Chris Boyer picked up two RBI with a single for a PH 2-0 advantage.
Reese faced the minimum of nine batters through three innings after picking off two runners who had reached on errors.
Berlin Hiland (26-4) looked like it was going to tie the game in the fourth inning when Reese hit the first batter he faced, Justin Miller. Then he gave up a single to the Hawks' Brandon Wengerd.
After a sacrifice bunt moved both runners into scoring position, Dillon Callahan hit a ball right off the pitchers mound where Reese backhanded it and fired to first getting Callahan in a bang-bang play.
Reese got out of the inning when Tony Yoder flied out to short centerfield.
Patrick Henry (27-2) rode Reese's momentum into the bottom of the inning and blew the game open.
A Berlin Hiland error loaded the bases for Mitch Leonard who quickly tacked on two more Patriots runs with a single.
George chased Hawks' starting pitcher Clinton Yoder with a two RBI triple to deep center field that measured every bit of 385 feet.
Reese helped his own cause by driving in George with a single pushing Patrick Henry's lead to 9-0.
After Reese retired the side in order in the top of the fifth, Patrick Henry executed a hit-and-run to perfection, setting up the winning run.
Cody Meyer reached base on an error and with Austin Bower at bat, Meyer started toward second as Bower slapped the ball to right field. Meyer moved to third on the play and scored the game-winning run when Zach Botjer drove the ball to left field.
Patrick Henry's state title is the first title by an area team since Miller City won the Class A state crown in 1984.
Berlin Hiland 000 00 -- 0 1 2
Patrick Henry 202 51 -- 10 11 2
No outs when game ended in 5th.
WP -- Reese (1-0). LP -- C. Yoder (0-1). top hitters: (BH) Wengerd 1B. (PH) George 3B, 1B, 2 RBI; Reese 2-1B, 2 RBI; Boyer 1B , 3 RBI; Botjer 2-1B, RBI; Phillips 2-1B; Bower 1B; Leonard 1B, 2 RBI.
records: Berlin Hiland 28-4, Patrick Henry 27-2.
Contact staff writer Joe Williams at: 419- 422-5151 email@example.com