Pine River had control of Friday’s baseball doubleheader action against Evart, winning a pair of six-inning Highland Conference games.

The Bucks won 10-0 in the opener, which ended on the mercy rule and 8-0 in the nightcap which was called because of darkness.

The losing pitchers for Evart were Josh Wirth in the first game and Tyler Mishler in the second. Wirth walked seven and fanned three. Mishler walked four and struck out six.

In the first game for Evart, Preston Boyd and Matt Mishler had two hits each. John Danley had two hits in the second game.

“The first two innings of the first game, we had four strikeouts looking and we walked five (Pine River batters),” said Evart coach George Sims. “It didn’t get any prettier after that. It was like that the rest of the night.”

Evart is 9-5 overall and 4-3 in the league. A tournament set for Saturday at Buckley was rained out.

On Friday, Evart is at Lake City in the Highland Conference.

“Except for Beal City it seems like everybody in the conference is beating up on each other,” Sims said.

Meanwhile, Josh Wirth’s presence on the mound and in the batter’s box has been paying huge dividends for Evart’s baseball team.

On May 9, the Wildcats defeated McBain 10-0 in a six-inning Highland Conference baseball game that ended on the mercy rule and had a 7-1 lead after four innings against the Ramblers in an suspended second contest.

“We just kept plugging along,” said Sims. “We’ve had a tendency in the past that when a team gets up on us to quit. Luckily, McBain never got ahead of us.”

Josh Wirth went all six innings in first game, allowing five walks and striking out eight.

“I was changing up pitches, getting good speed and breaking it up a little bit,” Wirth said.

Preston Boyd had two hits including a double and RBI while Tyler Wirth had two hits and four RBIs and Josh Wirth contributed two hits and scored three runs.

“The first inning, McBain had runners on second and third with nobody out,” Sims said. “Our shortstop (Brandon Angel) caught a line drive and we were able to double a guy off second.”

“We played really good tonight,” Wirth said. “We hit the ball really well. Our field was good.”

Wirth said this season “I’m a lot more accurate as far as placing my pitches. Coach Sims helped me with it.”

The second game was tied 1-1 after three innings and Evart exploded for six in the fourth thanks to several walks including three with the bases loaded. Boyd had a key hit for the Wildcats.

Wirth has also been happy with his hitting.

“I’ve been staying away from bad pitches,” he said, “and knowing which part of the strike zone to swing at.”

“We’re playing excellent,” Wirth said. “We’ve improved from last week. We have to stay focused.”

“Tyler Mishler threw a great second game,” Sims said.

“We have to stay disciplined and not make mental errors,” Wirth said.

On Friday, May 6, Evart lost 8-7 to Farwell in the first game of a doubleheader at home on Friday and the second game was suspected 1-0 after three innings with Evart ahead.

“We were winning all of those,” Sims said. “If it wasn’t for them being suspended, we’d be 10-3. That’s Michigan weather, not a lot you an do about it. Tyler is arguably our best pitcher but he hasn’t had a chance with the weather and darkness days to get in the second game.”

Matt Mishler had two hits with two RBIs against Farwell.

Jarek VanOrder pitched the first four innings for Evart.