After struggling out of the gate with just one victory in it first five games, Bradley Central roared to a run-rule win to open the Ooltewah Invitational Thursday, with a trio of Bear hurlers …
After struggling out of the gate with just one victory in it first five games, Bradley Central roared to a run-rule win to open the Ooltewah Invitational Thursday, with a trio of Bear hurlers combining for a no-hitter.
Facing Brindlee Mountain (Ala.) in the first of four games in a three-day span, Bradley ripped 10 hits in the 12-0, five-inning outcome at the McKenzie Baseball Complex.
Bear pitchers Riley Black, Jake Thompson and Ashton Simmons teamed up for the mound duty, each completely shutting down the out-manned boys from Alabama.
"Our pitchers did a really good job and our hitters took advantage of some mistakes they (Brindlee Mountain) made," commented veteran Bear head coach Travis Adams.
"We had a good trip to Florida although we didn't win any games down there (the last two games were one-run losses), but this was a good win for us tonight. Our kids did what they were supposed to do."
Bradley (2-4) will return to its home diamond at 5 this evening to face region-foe Warren County. On Saturday the Bears will entertain Grissom (Ala.) at 1 p.m. and Lincoln County at 7.
"We'll be pushed these next three games," assessed Coach Adams. "It'll be a good little grinder going into McMinn (County) Monday."
Needing just 12 pitches to strike out the side in the opening at bat, Black (1-1) got the Bears off on the right foot.
In the bottom of the first, Bradley batted around and put six runs on the scoreboard with just three hits, while the Lion starter plunked a pair of batters and walked another.
After Black walked a couple and got a fielder's choice out to open the top of the second, he bore down and K'd the next two batters to strand the two ducks on the pond.
The Bear bats lit up for a two-out, five-run rally in their half of the second frame.
Thompson, who had ripped a two-run single in the opening inning, sparked the rally with his second home run in as many games to push his season RBI total to eight.
The senior left-hander took the hill for the third frame and needed just 13 pitches, despite issuing a walk, to dispose of the Lions. He has yet to give up a run in eight innings of work this season. It was Thompson's first time on the bump since firing a two-hit, complete-game shutout over Soddy-Daisy early last week.
Simmons came on to fire the final two frames for the Bears, striking out three and needing just 19 pitches in setting the visitors down in order.
Bradley added its final run in bottom of the fourth when Iverson Vasquez singled, moved to third on a hit by Ethan Lamberth and scored his second run of the evening on a passed ball.
Thompson (.368 BA, .429 OBP, .737 Slg.) led the hit parade, going 2-for-2, plus drawing a walk, scoring twice and driving in a trio of runs.
"Thompson is seeing the ball well and getting his (bat) barrel in the zone," praised Coach Adams. "He's a competitor and a good two-strike hitter."
Eli Wilson got on base three times, with a single and getting plunked twice, plus stole a base and came around to score two runs.
Tucker Still, who has a .474 OBP thanks to being hit by five pitches so far this season, helped out with a hit and a freebie in three ABs, scoring twice and plating a pair of teammates.
Lee University signee Dylan Standifer (.333 BA, .524 OBP) made good on seven chances in the field, plus got on base twice with a hit and a plunk and came around to score a run.
at McKenzie Baseball Complex
Brindlee Mtn. (Ala.)00000 — 0 0 1
Bradley Central6501x — 12 10 0
WP: Riley Black (1-1) 2 IP, 0 hits, 0 ER, 5 Ks, 2 BB. LP: Knepper 3 IP, 8 hits, 8 ER, 2 Ks, 3 BB. HR: Jake Thompson (BC, 2). RBI: Thompson 3, Tucker Still 2, Ryan Giovengo, Logan Weeks (BC). SB: Eli Wilson (BC). Highlights: Thompson 2-2, HR, 3 RBI, 2 runs, BB, 1 IP, 1 K, BB, 0 ER; Dylan Standifer 1-2, HBP, run; Wilson 1-1, 2 HBP, 2 runs; Weeks 1-2, RBI, run; Still 1-2, HBP, 2 RBIs, 2 runs; Ashton Simmons 2 IP, 3 Ks, 0 BB, 0 ER (BC). Records: Brindlee Mtn. n/a; Bradley Central 2-4.
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