Wednesday's game with Patrick Henry was moved to Monday in anticipation of inclement weather. The decision proved to be a good one as the NRV was covered with snow both Tuesday and Wednesday. Coming off two wins last week, the Bruins continued their winning ways by dominating the Patriots 6-0 in Blacksburg.
Blacksburg's # 1 pitcher, Morgan McCoy, took the mound for Blacksburg in his first start of the season. He pitched 5 innings of shut out baseball, taking lots of pressure off the Bruin offense.
Despite the fact that PH's leadoff batter reached base by an infield error, McCoy only faced four batters in the top of the 1st, forcing a flyout, ground ball, and recording a strikeout.
Blacksburg did not score in the bottom half of the inning, but Jon Hinson did reach base with a single to CF, but was stranded. The Bruins also struggled in the 2nd inning, sending just four players to the plate. Tyler Barry singled to lead off the inning, but was stranded.
McCoy kept the pressure on the visiting Patriots for the next two innings, facing the minimum three batters in top of the 2nd and 3rd innings. He did give up a hit in the 3rd with one out, but then forced a ground ball double play to end the inning.
Blacksburg's offense broke out in the bottom of the 3rd, taking advantage of some opportunties and scoring 6 runs in the inning. Patrick Henry's pitcher made a cardinal baseball mistake of walking Blacksburg's lead off batter, Adam Linkous. Then, their infield committed an error, permitting the speedy Jake Verniel to beat out a bobbled ground ball to 2B. With two players on base and no outs, McCoy made PH pay with a triple to left field, scoring both Linkous and Verniel. Jon Hinson hit a sacrifice fly, scoring McCoy, and then reached on an error when the ball was dropped by the PH outfielder. The dropped ball permitted Hinson to reach all the way to 2B. PH's woes continued as the Patriot pitcher then hit Ethan Goforth, putting him on 1B. Grayson Shelton was inserted for Goforth as a courtesy runner. After PH finally was able to get an out, Jack Madigan surprised the Patriots with bunt single, scoring Hinson from 2B and on an errant throw home, enabled Shelton to advance to 3B and Madigan hustled to 2B. The hot hitting Jake Schirmer took advantage of the opportunity and doubled to left field, scoring both Shelton and Madigan. PH then retired the next two Bruin hitters via strike out to end the inning. However, Blacksburg had made a big statement. Not only did the Bruins plate 6 runs, but they did what good teams do, immediately taking advantage of opportunities provided by their opponent.
McCoy continued pitching well into the 4th, facing 6 batters. A Blacksburg infield error allowed the lead off batter to get on base and then McCoy responded with a quick strike out on four pitches. McCoy permitted a rare walk, and then struck out the next batter. Another Blacksburg infield error loaded the bases for PH, but McCoy was able to force a pop up foul ball to end the potential scoring threat for Patrick Henry.
Blacksburg's offense didn't produce much after the 3rd inning, with Jon Hinson singling in the 4th for his 2nd hit of the game. In the bottom of the 5th inning, Jake Schirmer recorded his 2nd of the game while Tyler Davis also singled in the inning. Two Bruins reached base on errors in the bottom of the 6th, but Blacksburg couldn't push any runs across.
McCoy pitched the 5th, giving up just one hit and one walk, but did not allow any runs to score. He forced two ground outs and struck the last batter out.
Jon Hinson entered the game in relief in the 6th, facing just three batters, striking out two, and forcing a ground out. Hinson gave up two hits in the top of the 7th, but shut the Patriots down, forcing three ground outs to end the game. Blacksburg did not bat in the bottom of the 7th.
Pitcher Morgan McCoy got his first win of the season, going five complete innings, allowing just two hits, waked two, and struck out five batters. Jon Hinson pitched two innings in relief, giving up two hits, striking out two and did not walk a batter.
Offensively, Blacksburg was led by Jon Hinson and Jake Schrimer, who each had two hits. Schirmer also had two RBIs.
After the game, Head Coach Danny Shouse was pleased with the win. He said, "We hit the ball good today, pitching is better and getting better, we still have some work to do, but hey, we're 3-0."
With the win, Blacksburg improves to 3-0 on the season and enters conference play on Friday vs. the Pulaski Cougars.