The Blacksburg Minors beat Bedford East on Wednesday 10-0 to eliminate them from the tournament, while advancing themselves to the finals tomorrow night vs Botetourt.
Grant Johnston was the starting pitcher for Blacksburg and struck out the first batter of the game and forced the next two to hit into infield grounders.
The Bruins then quickly broke the game open by scoring six runs in the bottom of the first. Luke Goforth led off with a single. Goforth would steal 2nd, and then Ben Freel hit a double to score Goforth. Cole Epperley drew a walk after Freel had stolen third. Epperley then stole 2nd. After an out, and with runners at 2nd and 3rd, Davis Roberson hit a two RBI single that scored both Freel and Epperley. Jacob Lucas kept the rally going by hitting a single, then Grant Johnston hit a double to score Roberson. After the 2nd out of the inning, Cordell Croy had a seeing eye single that scored Lucas. Matt Freel, who is 3/3 in his last three games, hit a single to score Johnston. Blacksburg would lead 6-0 after one complete inning of play.
In the top of the 2nd, Grant Johnston retired 3 straight Beford players, striking out 2, and getting the third to hit an infield grounder.
Colin Colver led off the bottom of the 2nd by drawing a huge walk, after shaking off a blow to the hand. Goforth then hit into a FC, and then stole 2nd. Ben Freel hit a single, to put runners at 1st and 3rd. Freel stole second to put himself in scoring position, and then Cole Epperley stroked a 2 RBI double to score Goforth and Freel. Wesely McCoy then hit a very nice single to the opposite field to score Epperley. After two complete innings of play, Blacksburg led 9-0.
In the top of the 3rd, Johnston faced four batters....Walked one, but forced the other three into grounders back to the pitcher.
In the bottom of the 3rd, Blacksburg would go three up and three down.
in the top of the 4th, Luke Goforth came into pitch in relief, facing just five batters. Goforth forced the first batter into a grounder back to himself, but then walked a Bedford batter. Ben Freel then made a spectacular play on a sky high pop up in foul territory that he temporarily lost in the lights to record the 2nd out. After a single, Goforth forced the fifth batter into hitting another grounder back to him for the assist at first.
In the bottom of the 4th, Blacksburg would send just one batter to the plate in Luke Goforth. On a 0-1 count, Goforth slammed a triple to the center field fence on the fly. The CF threw the ball home to prevent the speedy Goforth from an inside the park HR, which bounced hard on the firm dirt, and over the catcher. Goforth took home in dramatic fashion as the Bedford catcher lunged at home plate, but a second too late.
With the run, Blacksburg would eliminate Bedford East via slaughter rule 10-0.
Offensively, Blacksburg pounded out eleven hits in just 3 innings, plus a batter in the fourth. The Bruins were led by Ben Freel who went 2/2 with a stand up double and a single. Luke Goforth was 2/3 with a triple and a single. Cole Epperley and Grant Johnston were 1/2 with a double each, while Matt Freel was 1/1 with a single. Wesley McCoy, Davis Roberson, Jacob Lucas, and Cordell Croy each had a single, going 1/2.
Grant Johnston and Luke Goforth combined for a one hitter to completely shut down Bedford East. Starting P Johnston threw 3 innings of no hit baseball, only facing 10 batters, giving up just one walk. Grant recorded 3 Ks and 5 grounders back to himself. Goforth gave up only one hit, and forced two balls back to the pitcher.
With the win, Blacksburg advances to the State Tournament finals on Thursday vs Botetourt @ 6pm (please note game change from prior posted material of 7pm). The Cavaliers must beat the Bruins twice in order to claim the tournament championship. In the event of a Blacksburg loss in the first game, the second game will be played 30 minutes after the conclusion of the first game.
Tag(s): 9-10 Minors