Post 423 plunked eight times in loss to Shelby
Post 423 (3-9) hung right with Area leading Shelby Post 82 (18-3) for six innings. But the visitors scored six times over the final three frames to take a 7-1 win over Rutherford County Wednesday night at McNair Field.
The 423 offense was limited to just one hit by the Shelby duo of Cody Fitch and Jeren Byrd, a single that hit off the second base umpire. Post 423's only other offense came thanks to eight hit batters by Post 82 pitchers
“Conner [Daily] threw a great game and kept us in it,” said coach Sam Hooper “But we just could not get the big hit. The effort was there and I’m proud of that.”
After a quiet first inning by both teams, Shelby threatened in the top of the second. Jay Seagle reached on an error and moved to third on a wild pitch. A walk and hitter batter loaded the bases with two outs but Daily induced a ground ball to end the threat.
The bottom of the second featured an unusual set of circumstances. Will Odom drew a one out walk. He then attempted to steal, but the throw from the catcher hit pitcher Cody Fitch in the face. The batter, Joel McDaniel was called out on batters interference and Odom was sent back to first while Fitch stayed in the game. Odom was then thrown out trying steal to end the frame.
The third inning was even stranger for Post 423. With one out and Colton Snethen on second, centerfielder Brock Helton was ejected for arguing balls and strikes.
TJ Fincher followed with a line drive off the second base umpire that ricocheted into centerfield. Snethen appeared to score, but the play was ruled a dead ball and Snethen was sent back to second.
After a lengthy argument, Dylan Parris grounded out to end the inning the inning.
After Shelby got a run in the top of the fourth on a Nick Hastings RBI, Rutherford County tied the contest in the bottom half without the benefit of a hit. With two outs, Odom was hit, McDaniel walked, and Brent McCollum was also plunked. With Snethen at bat, Odom raced home on a wild pitch to knot the score at 1-1
The action settled down considerably over the next few innings .The home team did mount a threat in the sixth as Jordan Strickland became the fifth 423 batter hit on the night. Two outs later McCollum has hit in his straight plate appearance, but Strickland was picked off to leave the game tied.
Post 82 made a bid to break the tie in the seventh. With two outs Ryan Luckadoo singled to left. Pinch runner Dustin Jones promptly stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch.
Two walks loaded the bases for Fitch. He responded with a two run single just out of the reach of Dylan Parris. Hastings followed with a RBI single to make the tally 4-1 while Fitch was thrown out at the plate to end inning.
Post 423 brought the tying run to the plate with no outs. Fitch was replaced by Jaren Byrd who struck out Fincher and got Parris to line into a 4-3 double play.
A Shelby sacrifice by Jones in the eighth pushed their advantage to 5-1. A walk and another hit batter put two runners on with two outs but McCollum struck out swinging,
A triple by Byrd and a homer by Hastings off reliever Hunter Haynes gave Post 82 a 7-1 lead going into Rutherford County’s final at bat. Snethen did draw a leadoff walk but was left stranded to account for the 7-1 final.
Post 423 now begins a stretch of playing four games in four days as they travel to face Cherryville today at 7 p.m.
“This is a big stretch for us,” said Hooper. “If we can win a couple games, we’ll in the playoffs. If we don’t, we won’t. It’s that simple.”
Post 82 000 100 312
Post 423 000 100 000
WP C. Fitch
LP: C. Daily
SV: J. Byrd