By Tim Chambers
WASHBURN — Unaka’s semifinal game of the Region 1-A tournament against Washburn turned out to be nothing more than a walk in the park. The Rangers took advantage of nine walks and three hit batters to score a 19-2 win over the Pirates on Tuesday and advance into today’s championship game at North Greene.
The Creekers (13-14) started things off with a bang and never looked back. Billy Bales led off with a home run. Josh Ransick would deliver a three-run roundtripper after a walk to Jacob Hill and a double by Danny Bales.
“We were relaxed after that, and patient at the plate,” said Unaka head coach Aaron Dugger. “Getting the big lead early helped us with our pitching rotation. We were concerned about throwing Isaac Ryan tonight, then bringing him back on Friday with two days rest. It couldn’t have worked out any better for us.”
Indeed it couldn’t.
Rasnick would later add a tworun double in the same inning. The Rangers led 12-0 after one inning of play and put up seven more in the second frame.
Of the nine batters that walked, all of them scored. Another trio of Rangers that were hit by pitches also crossed the plate.
Eli Rasnick capped off the 12run first with another three run homer.
Jeffrey Yerkes would provide an RBI single, as would Labon Carrier off the bench.
Three Rangers pitchers combined to throw a no-hitter.
Ray started on the mound then gave way to Eli Rasnick, who collected the win, in the second. Dylan Lowe came on to pitch the fifth.
Josh Rasnick’s two hits and five RBIs topped Unaka’s offense. Eli Rasnick and Billy Bales shared a half dozen RBIs with a three-run homer each. Danny Bales was 1-for-1, and Yerkes and Carrier had the only other hits.
The winner of tonight’s Unaka and North Greene contest will be at home on Friday to face the loser of Grace Christian and Rockwood in the sub-state round. The loser will have to travel to the winner’s home destination.
Tonight’s game at Baileyton is slated for 7.
Unaka (12) 70 00 — 19 7 2 Washburn 010 01 — 2 0 3
W—Eli Rasnick. L—Williams. HR—Unaka (B. Bales, E. Rasnick, J. Rasnick).