After several rain outs, the Blacksburg Middle School team finally opened it's 2014 season in Pulaski vs the Cougars Middle School team. Pitching dominated both games as Pulaski beat Blacksburg 3-2 in the first game while the two teams tied in the second game.
In the 1st inning of the first game, Cole Epperley had a hit for Blacksburg but was stranded. Pulaski, meanwhile picked up a run off two hits to take an early 1-0 lead.
In the 2nd inning, Craig Weaver and Grant Johnston both had base hits. They each advanced a base on a wild pitch and then Davis Roberson hit a RBI single, scoring Weaver to tie the game 1-1.
Jared Madigan was the starting pitcher for Blacksburg and retired the Pulaski side in consecutive order, three up and three down, to keep the score tied at 1-1.
In the top of the 3rd, Madigan had a single and then advanced a base on a Chris Wysocki fielder's choice. Epperley had his second single of the game, but both runners were stranded. However, Pulaski had two hits that produced two runs in the bottom half of the frame, that extended their lead 3-1.
Roberson had a hit for Blacksburg in the top of the 4th, but was stranded. Madigan retired the Pulaski side in order, three up and three down, with three strike outs.
Blacksburg rallied in the top of the 5th, scoring a run to narrow the gap to 3-2. Luke Goforth had a single and then Wysocki had a RBI single, scoring Goforth. However, Wysocki was stranded as the tying run, and the game ended with Pulaski winning 3-2.
In the second game, the two teams tied 3-3.
In the top of the first inning, Luke Goforth led off the game with a single and then Chris Wysocki hit a fielder's choice, moving Goforth over to 2B. Cole Epperley then hit a bunt single and Collin Collver hit a two RBI single, scoring both Goforth and Epperley for an early 2-0 lead.
Collver started the second game of the double header for Blacksburg. He gave up just one hit and one run in the bottom half of the inning as Pulaski narrowed the gap to 2-1.
In the top of the 2nd inning, Devin Stosser, Christian Vance, and Ryan Oosterhuis all drew walks to load the bases. Goforth then hit a sacrifice fly to score Stosser to extend the Blacksburg lead 3-1. In the bottom half of the inning, Pulaski scored two runs off of two hits to tie the game at 3-3.
In the top of the 3rd, both teams were held scoreless. Blacksburg did not produce a baserunner and in the bottom half of the frame, Luke Goforth took over pitching for the Titans. He only faced four base runners and did not give up a hit.
In the top of the 4th, Vance and Oosterhuis both drew walks, but were stranded. In the bottom half of the inning, Goforth held Pulaski hitless after retiring the side in order and recorded two strike outs.
In the top of the 5th, Blacksburg had two hits, one each from Collver and Austin Nickle, but both were stranded. Blacksburg held Pulaski scoreless in the bottom of the 5th to preserve the tie. Goforth went 3 up and 3 down to end the game.
Head Coach Brad Epperley was pleased with his team's performance, saying "We put ourselves in position to score some runs but just couldn't quite get it done. I was really proud on how they all competed and never gave up. Considering this was our first DH of the season and our opponent has played eight games already, we fared pretty well. Jared pitched very well and gave us a chance to win and we played good defense behind him."
"In the second game, we did well early on the offensive end but then our bats stopped. Colin and Luke both pitched great for us and I can't emphasize enough how important that is in low scoring games like this. It's early yet and we're going to get a lot better. I appreciated everyone's efforts today."