Baseball Drops Four in Tennessee Valley Invitational
The Rams faced a loaded schedule with two ranked teams, going 0-4 on the road this past weekend.
February 12, 2013
The Bluefield baseball team faced a tall order this past weekend at the Tennessee Valley Invitational, as they took on a pair of nationally-ranked teams in just their second weekend of competition this spring. The Rams came away 0-4, playing a pair of games on both Friday and Saturday.
Friday’s matchups against Rio Grande (L, 0-4) and No. 3 Lee (L, 2-23) took place in Cleveland Tenn., while Saturday’s games with No. 20 Georgetown (L, 3-6) and (RV) Bryan (L, 2-5) were contested in Dayton, Tenn.
The squad drops to 2-5 on the young season and has to endure play on the road until their home-opener on March 1.
Against Rio Grande, the Red Storm jumped on the scoreboard in the bottom of the first by plating three runs. A one-out double followed by a single scored the first run of the ballgame. Cleanup hitter Shane Spies then hit a two-run homerun off Bluefield starting pitcher Kyle Miller to wrap up the inning’s runs.
Spies plated Rio Grande’s fourth and final run of the game in the bottom of the third. Spies reached on a single, advanced to second on a wild pitch, and then scored on an error.
The Rams placed two baserunners on in the top of the sixth inning, but didn’t manage to bring in a score. With one out, shortstop Will Simpson reached on a single, with Zac Russell-Myers reaching on a walk. Chris Rosa popped out, while a fielder’s choice finished the inning. Neither team threatened to score in the final frames, leading to the 4-0 victory for the Red Storm.
Lykins pitched six innings in the loss, while Rio Grande’s Kyle Miller picked up the win thanks to seven innings of two-hit baseball.
In the nightcap, No. 3 Lee scored at least three runs in all but one of its six at-bats, en route to the 23-2 win. The Flames opened with five runs in the bottom of the first and plated nine runs in the bottom of the fourth.
Bluefield scored the afternoon’s first and last runs, plating a player in the top of the first and the top of the seventh. Jamie Blackwell recorded both RBIs for the Rams and had three hits in the contest.
Despite having just the two runs, Bluefield struck for 10 hits on the afternoon. Rosa and Wright both had two-hit outings.
Mike Guinane earned the win for Lee, pitching three innings and allowing five hits. Kyle Long took the losing decision, giving up eight runs in one inning.
Bluefield and Georgetown needed extra innings to decide a victor, as the Rams posted three runs in the top of the seventh inning to knot the ballgame at three runs apiece. Bluefield held the Tigers scoreless in the bottom of the seventh inning to extend the game.
However, the Tigers struck once again in the bottom of the ninth inning, scoring three runs for the 6-3 victory over the Rams.
Against Bryan, the Rams dropped a 5-2 decision. The Lions scored a pair of runs in the second inning before tacking on three more runs in the fifth inning, to claim the 5-0 advantage.
The Rams tried to rally in the sixth inning, as Long and Russell-Myers both scored on a one-out Blackwell double. With two runners on, the following two Rams popped out and struck out to end the threat.
Sean Williams was credited with the loss and John Cain picked up the win for the Lions.
Bluefield returns to the diamond on Saturday, taking on North Greenville in a doubleheader. First pitch is scheduled for 12 noon in Tigerville, S.C.