NORMAN — Fresh off one of the worst defeats of the season, a loss to Norman High that gave the Tigers the season sweep in the Crosstown Clash, Norman North was in need of a big win.
And the Timberwolves delivered with their biggest win of the season.
Thanks to some timely hitting and a two-hit, nine-strikeout performance by starter Brad Kinsey, North defeated Westmoore 3-2 in a come-from-behind victory that puts them in the driver’s seat in District 6A-2.
Westmoore jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the top of the second inning, and starter Kyle Tyler was rolling through the lineup on his way to seven strikeouts. But North finally broke though in the fifth inning when Colton Hansmeyer doubled in a run and scored himself on a throwing error.
That set the stage for the next inning, when Joe Nostrand singled Thomas Hughes to third and Hughes scored on a passed ball several pitches later.
“We kind of called them out after the adversity last week,” coach Brian Aylor said of this team. “I told them all I care about is how tough and how much you’re willing to fight. And they fought today.”
None more than Kinsey, who walked five and watched his defense make a pair of errors behind him but came through when it mattered most. Trying desperately to keep the deficit to two runs when Westmoore loaded the bases in the top of the fifth, Kinsey settled in after a quick meeting at the mound and came back with two straight strikeouts to end the threat. He went on to work the sixth cleanly and recording the first out of the seventh on a strikeout before giving way to Austin Cranford to pick up the save.
“After he settled down he kept getting better as the game went on,” Aylor said. “That’s the sign of a really good pitcher, that they get better late.”