Chase Green and Austin Mahaffey each homered twice in Saturday's Apollo Conference doubleheader, and their Effingham High School club established itself as a serious contender for the league's baseball title with an 11-8, 12-6 sweep of Olney at Paul Smith Field.

The Flaming Hearts abused the Tiger pitching staff for a total of 26 hits in the twinbill and improved to 4-0 in the Apollo with a 5-1 overall record.

"I don't remember the last time we started off 4-0 in the Apollo," said EHS coach Chris Fleener, whose team hasn't lost since a 10-9 season opener at Mahoemet-Seymour and has averaged 10 runs per outing.

"Olney has a very nice club, and to get 11 and 12 runs off them is a good feeling. They have quality pitching, but our bats showed up. I'm impressed with our approach at the plate; the boys are showing patience, sitting back and driving the ball."

The Tigers entered the game 7-0 overall and had swept Wednesday's season-opening Apollo twinbill with Paris by identical 3-1 scores.

EHS had also last played Wednesday with a 9-3, 4-3 sweep of Salem; both of those doubleheaders had been scheduled for Saturday but pushed back to Tuesday and then Wednesday due to wet weather.

Mahaffey, who was 4-for-6 for the day with four RBIs, drilled his pair of round-trippers in his first two at-bats of the second game, two no-doubters representing his team-leading third and fourth dingers of the season.

"Austin is so relaxed up there," said Fleener. "He's just up there being a senior leader, and he's having some fun along with some good success. He's taking on a different role on this year's team and that's nice to see."

Meanwhile, Chase Green was 3-for-4 in the opener with a solo bomb to lead off the third inning and 2-for-3 in the nightcap with a walk, an RBI double and another solo shot to straightaway center field in the fourth.

Green reached base in every one of his eight plate appearances and scored five runs on the day, tying Mahaffey for the team high.

Cody McCollum also got in on the offensive barrage, going 3-for-4 in the opener with a two-run single in the first and a two-run blast to left in the sixth; he also had a hit in the late game. Brad Reedy was 2-for-3 with an RBI sacrifice fly in game one and 2-for-4 with a two-run single in game two.

Effingham's hitting was relentless - the top five spots in the order were a combined 22-for-38 (.579) in the two games - but its pitching showed there is still some work to be done.

The Hearts gave up seven runs in Olney's last two offensive innings of the first game and surrendered three more in the top of the seventh of game two.

"It's a good thing we got as many runs as we did," said Fleener. "We ended up needing every one of them. We had to stay on edge during the seventh inning of both games.

"Olney is certainly a team capable of putting up big innings, and our staff eventually came through for us both times. We definitely lived and learned today."

The Tigers trailed 8-1 after five innings in the first game and 12-3 after six innings of the second.

Chad Green, who was also 3-for-7 at the plate for the day, started the opener on a limited pitch count after having to labor in his Wednesday victory over Salem; the tall righthanded junior took an eight-strikeout four-hitter into the sixth, but walked two to star the frame and gave up a three-run blast to Cody Smith.

Tyler Ohnesorge came on and got out of the sixth with relative ease, but struggled quite a bit in the seventh before being bailed out by Reedy.

Reedy got himself another save in the second game as he tossed three innings in relief of Mahaffey; Mahaffey scattered five hits and three walks for a couple runs in his time on the mound, while Reedy labored to shut the door with a big lead but eventually got the job done.

The Hearts are off for the week and host Newton in more Apollo play Saturday; Newton is winless in conference play with sweeps at the hands of Mount Zion and Charleston.

Charleston will attempt to make up a rainout with Robinson Tuesday; the Trojans are the only Apollo team besides Effingham without a loss after just two weeks of play. Mount Zion was swept by Paris Saturday, while Salem and Robinson split.

EHS NOTES: The Hearts are hitting .401 as a team through six games . . . Chase Green leads the way at .591 with a .640 on base percentage . . . with a team-high 10 RBIs, Austin Mahaffey has nearly reached his total from last season (11) and has already doubled last year's home run total with four . . . 24 of the Hearts' 71 hits have been for extra bases, although none have been triples . . . Effingham's last 4-0 start in the Apollo was in 2004, when the Hearts finished 11-3 in second place behind undefeated Mount Zion.

Dustin White can be reached at 217-347-7151 ext. 123 or dustin.white@effinghamdailynews.com.

At Paul Smith Field

Game One

OLNEY

ab-r-h-bi


Pickens cf-5-1-0-0

Trupiano dh-4-0-0-0

Bailey p-0-0-0-0

Houchin c-4-0-2-0

Goss cr-0-1-0-0

McDowell 3b-4-1-3-1

Walden rf-3-2-1-1

Berry 1b-2-2-0-0

Smith 2b-4-1-2-4

Groves lf-4-0-1-1

Pampe ss-4-0-2-1

TOTALS-34-8-11-8

EFFINGHAM

ab-r-h-bi


Cs Green ss-3-3-3-1

Meinhart c-3-0-1-0

Harpster cr-0-1-0-0

Cd Green p-4-0-2-1

Gartner cr-0-2-0-0

Mahaffey 3b-3-2-2-0

McCollum 2b-4-1-3-4

Reedy cf-3-1-2-1

Pilcher rf-3-1-0-0

Ohnesorge 1b-3-0-1-2

Cook dh-3-0-0-0

Wohltman lf-0-0-0-0

TOTALS-29-11-14-9

Olney-----100---003---4---—----8

Effingham-302---033---x---—---11


E — Pickens, Houchin, Cd. Green. LOB — Olney 10, Effingham 5. DP — Olney 1. 2B — Walden, Pampe, Mahaffey, Reedy. HR — Smith (6th, 2 on), Cs Green (3rd, none on), McCollum (6th, 1 on). SB — Cs Green, Meinhart. SAC — Meinhart. SF — Reedy.

PITCHING SUMMARY

IP-H-R-ER-BB-SO

Olney


Bailey (L, 2-1)-5-11-8-7-2-2

Miller-1-3-3-2-1-3

Effingham

Cd Green (W, 2-0)-5-5-4-3-3-8

Ohnesorge-1-5-4-4-1-1

Reedy (S, 1)-1-1-0-0-0-1

WP — Ohnesorge 1. BK — Bailey. HBP — Trupiano (by Cd Green). U — Craig Carr (HP), Craig Wise (B). T — 2:06.

Game Two

OLNEY

ab-r-h-bi


Pickens cf-3-0-1-0

Trupiano dh-4-0-0-0

Steber p-0-0-0-0

Hout 1b-0-0-0-0

Houchin c-3-2-1-0

McDowell ss-4-1-1-1

Walden rf-4-1-2-3

Berry 1b-4-1-2-1

Smith 2b-2-1-0-0

Groves lf-4-0-3-0

Pampe 3b-4-0-1-1

TOTALS-30-6-11-6

EFFINGHAM

ab-r-h-bi


Cs Green ss-3-2-2-2

Meinhart c-3-0-1-0

Harpster cr-0-1-0-0

Cd Green 1b-3-2-1-0

Mahaffey p-3-3-2-4

McCollum 2b-3-2-1-0

Reedy cf-4-0-2-2

Pilcher rf-4-1-2-2

Huey 3b-3-0-1-1

Wohltman lf-1-0-0-0

Gartner dh-4-1-0-0

Ohnesorge lf-0-0-0-0

TOTALS-31-12-12-11

Olney-----000---210---3---—----6

Effingham-212---115---x---—---12


E — Steber, McDowell, Grovbes, Pampe, Cs Green, McCollum, Wohltman. LOB — Olney 9, Effingham 6. DP — Effingham 1. 2B — McDowell, Groves, Cs Green, Meinhart, Pilcher 2. 3B — Walden. HR — Berry (4th, none on), Walden (7th, 2 on), Mahaffey 2 (1st, 1 on; 3rd, none on), Cs Green (4th, none on). SB — Pickens, Cs Green.

PITCHING SUMMARY

IP-H-R-ER-BB-SO

Olney


Steber (L, 2-1)-2.1-5-5-4-2-0

Berry-2.2-6-3-2-0-1

Pickens-1-1-4-3-3-1

Effingham

Mahaffey (W, 1-0)-4-5-2-2-3-2

Reedy (S, 2)-3-6-4-3-1-1

U — Craig Wise (HP), Craig Carr (B). T — 1:59.

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