HIXSON — Setting down 14 batters in a row at one point, senior Robbie Works allowed just one earned run in a complete game effort Thursday to lead Bradley Central to its first victory of the young baseball season.
“Works pitched a great game. That’s was the best outing I’ve seen him have,” declared Bear head coach Travis Adams after the 8-3 win over East Hamilton in the opening round of the Wildcat Classic in Hixson.
“We still have some guys battling for the No. 2 starter role and he just took a big step forward,” the coach added. “It’s good to get this first win and hopefully we can get things rolling.”
The win snaps a streak of 16 straight losses dating back to last season for the Bears, including a pair of one-run defeats to Soddy-Daisy earlier this week.
Bradley (1-2) will travel to Harrison this evening for an 8:30 game against Chattanooga Central before making the quick turnaround for a 10 a.m. game against Meigs County back at Pounder Field. The Bears will wrap up pool play at 2:30 tomorrow afternoon against Gwinnett, Ga.
Putting five runs on the board in the game’s first at bat, Bradley took advantage of some early wildness by the East Hamilton starter.
After junior Brently White opened the game with a single, Dylan Johnston was hit by a pitch before Chase Wiseman and Caleb Pippenger both walked. White scored on a wild pitch and Johnston came around on a throwing error. Jacob Maynard followed with a RBI-single before Jacob Fowler laced a two-run hit.
After the Hurricanes (2-1) got a run in the bottom of the first, the Bears responded with another run on a Charlie Brown sacrifice fly in the top of the second.
Wiseman drove in a run in the third with a sac fly of his own before Bradley’s final run came in the fifth frame when two more walks and another hit batsman brought Chandler Duggan in to score.
Bradley had a half dozen hits in the contest, but also took advantage of 11 walks and three hit batsmen. The 14 freebies led to six of the Bear runs.
Fowler went 2-for-3 with a double, while Maynard was 2-for-4.
Works (1-0) went all seven innings on the mound, striking out five and walking three.
BEARS 8, HURRICANES 3
Bradley Central 511 010 0 — 8 6 2
East Hamilton 100 001 1 — 3 5 1
WP: Robbie Works (1-0) 7 IP, 5 K, 3 BB, 5 H, 1 ER. 3B: Austin Gatewood (EH); 2B: Jacob Fowler . RBIs: Fowler 2, Jacob Maynard, Charlie Brown, Chase Wiseman (BC). Records: Bradley Central 1-2; East Hamilton 2-1.