Hamilton on a roll, wins sixth straight with shutout over Colerain

OXFORD — Hamilton High School’s baseball team is in a groove. It took some time, but the Big Blue are playing well — to the tune of six straight wins.

Clint Moak and Cournell Bennett-McCoy combined to pitch a three-hit shutout and each escaped bases-loaded jams to help Hamilton secure a 1-0 victory over Greater Miami Conference rival Colerain on Friday night in the Reds Futures High School Showcase at Miami University’s McKie Field.

“When you first come in, you’re just trying to get them to buy into what you’re wanting to do,” Big Blue first-year coach Josh Sams said. “Early on, in some of the games that we lost, we just weren’t throwing strikes. The last six or seven games, we’ve been throwing strikes and playing good defense.”

Hamilton (8-6, 7-4 GMC) started the season 2-6 before winning its last six. The Big Blue have beaten the Cardinals three of the last four meetings, including this season’s two-game series sweep.

Hamilton matched its longest winning streak since reeling off six consecutive wins to start the 2021 season.

“There’s been a lot of first-time varsity players coming through,” Sams said. “But they’re all starting to play clean baseball and have good at-bats.

“The only thing about today is that we left a lot of guys on base and let go a lot of back-door curve balls.”

Clint Moak saw his first action on the mound Monday since Hamilton’s 9-4 loss to Oak Hills on April 1. The senior right-hander and Marshall University commit pitched 1 1/3 innings against Sycamore before getting the start Friday night.

Moak struck out six, walked just one and surrendered three hits in four innings of scoreless work to earn the win. He got out of a bases loaded jam in the third inning after serving up two hits and walking one.

Caleb Warner singled in the bottom of the fourth and came around to score on a passed ball by Colerain starter Dylan Lloyd to give the Big Blue their lone run.

Bennett-McCoy hit the mound in the fifth and tossed three hitless innings, striking out seven. The senior fanned three straight batters with the bases loaded in the top of the sixth to send the Hamilton dugout into a frenzy.

“I live to have those moments,” Bennett-McCoy said. “I want the ball in my hands everyday if I can do it.”

Nick Brosius, Kaleb Powers, William Baker, Tommy Schuster and Warner each had base hits for the Big Blue.

“I thought about halfway through the season we’d be able to see what we have,” Sams said. “I think they’re a fun team to watch. They get along. They have fun, and they compete. I think that’s what it takes to win.”

Sams said the 1-2 punch of Moak and Bennett-McCoy could be a scary combination as the season moves along. Moak is easing his way back into the pitching rotation after nursing a sore shoulder.

“We had it planned out for those two to work together,” Sams said. “We really wanted to keep our mojo going. Both of those guys did it for us. We can make a good run at this.”

Bennett-McCoy said things are positively different in the Big Blue dugout right now. Hamilton moved into second place in the GMC standings behind Mason (14-1, 10-0 GMC).

“It’s just a better atmosphere,” Bennett-McCoy said. “We’re communicating, and we’re learning a lot more at practice. We’re just having a good time.”


The Big Blue host Lakota East at 5 p.m. on Monday.

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