TECUMSEH – Will Hilton became the hero of the day for Tecumseh Friday with a walkoff single to beat McLoud 5-4 at home after nine innings.

Hilton lined a shot into right field to score Dawson Jones and win the game. It was a situation Hilton was ready for, coach Jeff Shafer said.

“You always prepare for it as a hitter. You always want to go up when the game is on the line and we kinda have some situational stuff we work on... today it payed off for us,” he said.

Down 4-2 in the bottom of the seventh with bases loaded, and no outs Jones hit a sacrifice to center to Kullen Meadows and get within one. Byron Thompson hit into a fielder's choice and reached on an error that would have otherwise resulted in a double play to end the game. The error allowed Kameron Permetter to score and tie at four.

McLoud put up a three-run rally in the top of the third and Zac Green doubled to score Braden Logan in the fifth and go ahead 4-1.

Hilton and Payton Cooper led the Savages at the plate, each going 2-for-4 and Hilton doubled for the only extra-base hit of the game for Tecumseh.

The Savages had chances to get runs earlier in the game but were never able to capitalize on them.

“We had numerous chances throughout the ballgame and finally got a big hit at the end. It was definitely a good win, something we needed. We've been working hard and finally our hard work has payed off,” Shafer said.

Green and Josh Maddox each drove in a run for McLoud and Logan and Josh Brown each doubled.

Thompson was awarded the win on the mound, pitching 2.1 innings to close things out with no hits, runs or walks. Cooper started the game for the Savages and gave up four runs on four hits with one earned run.

“Payton gave us a good start, kept us in the ball game with five good quality innings and then Byron came in and spoiled us through the sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth inning,” Shafer said. 

Green was handed the loss for McLoud, throwing for 2.2 innings in the conclusion and giving up one run on two hits. The team committed two errors behind him and six in the game as a whole. Maddox got the start and pitched for four innings, striking out five and giving up one run and one hit. Jaxton Pennington replaced him and gave up three runs on two hits with three whiffs and three walks.

The Savages, 2-4 on the season, lost to McLoud 9-2 Thursday. They host Heritage Hall Monday at 5. McLoud (4-3) is at Ada Monday before playing host Tuesday at 4:30.

The win was a step in the right direction, Shafer said.

“We're trying to get one percent better each day. Today we got better,” he said. “We've kinda had a few struggles here and there, but if we continue to get better and believe in the system, I think we'll have a chance here at the end.”