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Tinkering with mechanics pays off for Morgan and Buvid in Tigers' victory versus Irish


Cash Morgan couldn’t have asked for better scenarios for his at-bats Friday. The Ozark first baseman batted with runners in scoring position in each of his three plate appearances.

Morgan came through with a pair of hits and four RBIs in the Tigers’ 7-2 triumph versus Springfield Catholic.

Morgan ripped a two-run double in Ozark’s three-run first inning and added a two-run single single the Tigers’ four-run fifth.

“Surprisingly, I was not nervous. I stayed calm,” Morgan said about hitting with runners on base. “I like RBIs more than I like getting on base. I also like 0-2 counts — it’s do or die.”

Morgan and catcher Cooper Buvid enjoyed a productive afternoon, after making recent adjustments in their hitting mechanics.

“I’m keeping my hands from moving,” Morgan said. “I was moving them back and forth and that was making my swing drag.”

The change Buvid has made is more dramatic. He’s staying flat-footed while swinging, similar to the manner Cardinals first baseman Paul Goldschmidt employs.

Buvid was 2-for-4 with an RBI Friday.

“A couple weeks ago I went into the cage and tried it,” Buvid said. “I’m seeing the pitch more and staying on it. It gives me better timing.”

Buvid adds he’s still been able to generate plenty of power. 

“I don’t see any difference,” he said.

Buvid returned to the Tigers for Wednesday’s loss at Glendale, after missing their COC contest at Branson on Tuesday.

“It feels good to be back,” he said.

Ozark’s offense also included a triple and double by Brady Dodd, a double by Brock Dodd and a single by Brock Sundlie.

Winning pitcher Hudson Roberts and reliever Gage Depee combined to shut out Catholic over the final six innings.

Roberts shook off a two-run Irish home run in the first.

“I knew he would dig down and do his thing,” Buvid said of his batterymate.

Ozark took a 9-8 record into its trip to Warrensburg on Saturday. Catholic (9-3) was the Class 3 state runner-up last season.

“This is a big win for us,” Morgan said. “I was stressing out about going under .500.”