OOLTEWAH — For six innings it was your typical hammer-and-nail, evenly fought District 5-AAA battle. But for one half inning everything went Ooltewah’s way and the host Owls claimed a 7-1 victory over Bradley Central Monday evening at A.C. “Bud” Ball Field.
A pair of Bear errors and four Ooltewah hits led to a six-run rally for the home team in the bottom of the fourth frame, which proved to be the difference in the contest. Outside of that half inning both teams scored just one run as Bradley managed only three hits and the Owls four in the other six frames.
The two teams will square off again tonight, this time at the McKenzie Baseball Complex. First pitch is slated for 7 p.m.
After leaving runners on second and third in the opening frame, Ooltewah (13-6, 7-2 District 5-AAA) got on the board first Monday evening with a second-inning run without benefit of a hit. Kevin Dupree drew a walk to lead off the at bat and after moving around on a pair of groundouts, he came in to score on a passed ball.
Bradley (11-9-1, 2-5) evened the contest when senior Chase Wiseman led off the top of the fourth with a ringing double into the right-center field gap.
Classmate Robbie Works then took the team lead in runs batted in when he laced a single past the Owl first baseman. Works went 2-for-3 on the night to improve his team-leading batting average to .431 to go along with his 16 RBIs.
The Owls broke the game open in the bottom of the frame when three of their first four batters singled, before a passed ball and a pair of Bear errors contributed to the six-run rally, only half of which were earned runs.
The rest of the game was quiet as Ooltewah had three more base runners, but none got past second base, while Dupree capped off a three-hit pitching performance by facing just one batter over the minimum in the final three Bear at bats.
Dupree, who has committed to play for the University of Tennessee, went the distance on the hill for the Owls, striking out a half dozen and issuing three free passes.
Bradley came out on top in the junior varsity game, taking a 9-1 lead before hanging on for an 11-10 victory.
Ryan Blair stroked a double, while Chandler Duggan laced a pair of singles in the victory. Cal Pickel, Caleb Pace and Tucker Maroon also hit safely for the Bears.
Maroon drove in three runs, while Pace and Pickel each plated a pair of Bear teammates. Ty King also collected an RBI in the game.
Jacob Barnes toed the rubber for the first three innings to earn the pitching victory, while King threw the final three for the save.
OWLS 7, BEARS 1
Bradley Central 000 100 0 — 1 3 4
Ooltewah 010 600 x — 7 8 0
WP: Kevin Dupree 6 IP, 6 Ks, 3 H, 2 BB, 1 HBP, 1 ER. LP: Jordan Whitmire (2-3) 5 IP, 2 Ks, 7 H, 3 BB, 4 ER. 2B: Chase Wiseman (BC); Cody Rhinehart (O). RBIs: Robbie Works (BC); Logan Fugate, Brody Binder (O). Highlights: Works 2-3 SB, RBI, 1 IP, 1 K, 0 BB, 1 H, 0 ER; Wiseman 1-for-2, 1 CI, 1 r (BC). Records: Bradley Central 11-9-1, 2-5 District 5-AAA; Ooltewah 13-6, 7-2 District 5-AAA.