BY CHAD DARE
There was only one thing that upset Danville Area Community College freshman A.J. Childerson on Sunday.
It was the bunt single by Lewis & Clark College leadoff batter John Wuelling in the sixth inning.
Childerson, who had a no-hitter until that point, went on to toss a two-hit shutout as the Jaguars defeated the Trail Blazers 6-0 in the second game of the Mid-West Athletic Conference doubleheader. DACC also won the first game, 6-4.
“I didn’t like the way it gotten broken up, especially off a bunt in the sixth inning,’’ said the freshman from Greenville. “I felt pretty good all the way through, just tried to throw all three pitches where I wanted to.’’
Childerson didn’t let that hit or an infield single in the seventh inning get him off his game.
The right-hander struck out 10 in the seven-inning complete game and didn’t walk a batter.
“You don’t walk anyone. You throw it over the plate and he threw three pitches for strikes, and he commanded both sides of the plate,’’ DACC coach Tim Bunton said. “I know it sounds simple, but he executed.’’
And, it was the kind of performance that the Jaguars have come to expect from Childerson, whose ERA is under 2.00.
“He’s been good all year. From a consistent standpoint, he is probably been the most consistent,’’ Bunton said. “He just continues to get better.
“The thing we love about him is that he competes and he likes to learn — he wants to get better and he has.’’
According to Bunton, the areas of improvement for Childerson have been with his breaking ball and the command of his fastball.
“I’ve been working on hitting spots rather than throwing as hard as I can,’’ Childerson said. “When I have control of my breaking ball, everything works out a lot better.’’
The second game of the doubleheader was quite a contrast from the opener for the Jaguars.
DACC, which committed six errors in the first game, rallied from a 4-0 deficit with a four-run eighth inning sealing their come-from-behind 6-4 victory.
“We had a discussion in between games. We won, but we needed to clean things up,’’ Bunton said. “We were sloppy against Franklin, sloppy against John Wood and sloppy in that game. It’s not going to equate to wins in the tournament.
“We have enough offense to manufacture a few runs, but we can’t make six errors, walk and hit people like we did in the game. We were fortunate to get out of the first game with a win.’’
Mark Keller, who had four hits in the doubleheader, capped the eighth-inning rally with a two-out, two-run single to left.
Former Schlarman standout Alec Neal threw 3Ð innings of shutout relief to get the victory for the Jaguars, who improved to 28-14 overall and 16-10 in the MWAC with the sweep.
“We feel like Alec is our best option in a long-relief role like that,’’ Bunton said. “He did really well and he gave us a chance to comeback and get that victory.’’
DACC will travel to Godfrey today to complete the four-game series with Lewis & Clark. The MWAC doubleheader is scheduled to start at 1 p.m.