Blacksburg hosted Conference 32 opponent Patrick County in its second conference game of the year. The Bruins kept Patrick scoreless through the first three innings as the Bruins Morgan McCoy battled Patrick’s Cole Helms in a pitcher’s duel.
In the bottom of the 3rd, Blacksburg put two runs on the board to take a 2-0 lead. With one out, Seb Cianelli singled to CF and then McCoy drew walk. Ethan Goforth reached on an error by the left fielder, which allowed Cianelli to score. The error also permitted McCoy and Goforth to each advance an extra base. Adam Linkous hit an RBI ground out to 2B, which scored McCoy. A fly out then ended the inning.
Patrick tied the game in the top of the 4th, 2-2 on a single and then a homerun.
In the bottom of the 4th, Jake Verniel singled with one out, and then Hunter Radford, who was called up from JV, registered his first varsity hit, a single to LF. However, a double play ground ball ended the inning for the Bruins.
Patrick County exploded for eight runs to take a 10-2 lead over the Bruins. Blacksburg’s infield committed three errors, which gave Patrick six outs in the inning and contributed to four of the eight runs.
After Blacksburg was held scoreless again in the bottom of the 5th, Patrick County added two more runs in the top of the 6th on three walks, another infield error, and a single. The Cougars led 13-2 and threatened to end the game early via the ten run rule unless Blacksburg could battle back.
The Bruins did just that as they scored two runs in the bottom of the 6th to stay alive. Jake Schirmer led off by singling to LF and then Ben Anstrom doubled to LF. Jake Verniel hit a sac fly, which scored Schirmer (13-3). After an out, Tyler Davis drew a walk and then Seb Cianelli hit a single, which kept the game from ending early as Anstrom scored (13-4). A ground out ended the inning for Blacksburg.
After holding Patrick scoreless in the top of the 7th, the Bruins picked up two more runs to narrow the lead to 13-6. Goforth reached base on an infield error and then Linkous and Schirmer both drew walks to load the bases for Blacksburg. Anstrom hit a single to LF, scoring Goforth (13-5) and then Jake Verniel reached base on a fielder’s choice, scoring Linkous (13-6). Two consecutive fly outs, however, ended the game for Blacksburg.
Offensively, Blacksburg scored six runs on seven hits but defensively, had nine errors. At the plate the Bruins were led by Seb Cianelli, who was 2/3 with one RBI and Ben Anstrom, who was 2/4 with an RBI. Jake Schirmer, Jake Verniel, and Hunter Radford each added a hit for Blacksburg.
Head Coach Danny Shouse said "it’s on me to get this defense straightened out. We can't give a team six outs in an inning. The nine errors are inexcusable. At times it looked like a circus out there. But, I didn’t get upset. I wanted to see if we would roll over or battle back and we battled. If we come to play, no one will out hit us, we just can’t give away runs. The bottom of our order is really producing right now and carrying us at times. Some of the others aren’t doing as well, but as long as they do come play off time, that’s what matters."
"Now that we are 0-2 in the five conference games that matter, it puts a lot of pressure on us to win out. We can't lose any more conference games. It’s going to start today with a new defense."
With the loss, Blacksburg falls to 7-3 overall, and 0-2 in conference play.
Tag(s): BHS Varsity