Like a twangy chord sounds good in a country song, a good pitching performance is music to a coach and his team’s ears.
In the opener of Thursday’s twin-bill in the Babe Ruth League at EHS, Scotty Oliver and Horace Mann Insurance dominated Eagle Center by a 10-0 final tally. Cabinet Top Masters of Hampton continued their winning ways in the nightcap and remained unbeaten at 5-0 with a 15-5 victory over Piney Bluff whose sponsor is Pardner’s BBQ.
Oliver allowed no hits and struck out 10 with a blazing fastball and a curveball that bent the knees of the Eagle Center hitters all game.
“I felt good, and I had a good defense behind me,” said Oliver. “My curveball was working good, so I worked it a lot. When we started hitting in the third I knew we would progress with it.”
Progress they did to the tune of five runs on five hits, and further aided by a pair of Eagle Center miscues gave the boys from Mann Insurance a five run lead. Jake Danuser got things rolling with a triple to left field, followed one out later by a three bagger from Kyle Moore to plate the games first run.
Brady Varner reached on an infield error by Eagle Center which allowed Moore to score. A second infield miscue off the bat of Nash Eryasa put runners on first and third and after a strikeout of Oliver Daniel Runion smacked a two run hit to right field to make it a 4-0 game.
Chase Young had a hit to center and Chris Young’s RBI knock gave Mann it’s five run advantage.
Oliver continued to show no let up on the hill striking out the first two hitters to face him in the fourth and finished by striking out the side in the fifth to close things out.
Mann struck for five runs in the last of the fourth with Danuser setting the table once again as he reached on the fourth error of the evening for Eagle Center. Moore tripled once again brining home Danuser and one out later Eryasa smacked a double to bring home another run and give Mann a 7-0 lead.
Oliver drove home a run with a hit and Chase Young’s single plated two more before Danuser came up again and had an RBI single for a 10-run Mann Insurance lead.
Piney Bluff…………………. 5
Nate Perry pitched four innings of shutout ball as Cabinet Top Masters built a 7-0 lead.
fter that the pitching went south for both teams as Piney Bluff rallied to make it a two run game going into the last of the fifth.
With CTM ahead 7-0 Kaleb Bare opened the fifth for Piney Bluff with a single to centerfield and in a scary moment Logan Boomershire was plunked in the head with a pitch. He would get up under his own power and take first base.
One out later an infield single by Cody Bishop loaded the bases for Piney Bluff. Perry began to show signs of fatigue about now as he issued an RBI single to Alex McCracken that made it a 7-1 contest.
Bases loaded walks to Dalton Justice and Dillon Wolfe made it a 7-3 game and manager Van Tassell went to Stone Hutchinson for relief.
“He’s still working on his pitch count, but for the first four innings he pitched well,” said Tassell. “We hit the ball throughout the order tonight, very well. Jacob and Dalton had four hit apiece Stone had three. Everybody hit the ball well, they are all good kids that play hard.”
Drew White greeted Hutchinson with an RBI hit that brought home two runs and made it a 7-5 ballgame with the tying run at the plate. Hutchinson reached back for a little extra and struck out Shuler Moyers to put down the threat.
White, who had pitched well in relief of starter Tyler White since the third inning, began to fray around the edges in the last of the fifth and into the sixth where CTM put the game away with a five spot.
In the contest Byrd was four-for-four with three RBI, while Blair was three-for-three with a walk and had a three run inside the park home run in the sixth. Hutchinson went three-for-four with a double and an RBI.