7/20/2010 – Daily News Record
By Mike Barber Daily News Record
STAUNTON – Twice on Tuesday night, skunks sent the Harrisonburg Turks fleeing from their dugout. But those flights had nothing on the escape job they pulled to beat Staunton.
Drew Granier threw a gutsy seven innings, giving up two runs – one earned – on just two hits while striking out nine and walking four and hitting two batters to lead Harrisonburg to a 7-5 win over Staunton in front of 713 fans at Moxie Stadium, ending the team’s four-game losing streak.
But once the Turks turned to their consistently inconsistent bullpen, things turned more sour than the stench from the skunks’ spray.
“It was hard to watch,” said Granier, who spent the final two innings nervously pacing up and down the right-field line and later behind the Turks’ dugout. “It’s a lot more frustrating and nervous sitting on the bench because you can’t do anything about it.”
Tuesday looked to be head for a similar outcome.
Recently added right-hander Ryan Chapman hit two batters in the eighth inning and the Turks (17-16) committed three errors in the frame, giving up three runs and looking less like the team that was a Valley League title contender two weeks ago and more like the bunch that had lost four straight and eight of its last 10 going into Tuesday’s game.
Still, behind Granier and the offense of catcher Caleb Bowen and outfielder Reuben Sosa, Harrisonburg had enough to end its losing streak.
“Just any win, we had to have a win,” Turks manager Bob Wease said. “Any win at all, just to stop this slide we’ve had. We were in first place. Seven, eight, 10 days later we have a chance to not even make the playoffs. I think we were lucky to get out of here tonight with a win.”
Brown – picked up last week when he was released by Luray – went 3-for-4 with two doubles, two RBIs and a run scored.
Sosa went 3-for-5 with two bunt singles and two runs scored.
The start of the game was delayed 40 minutes because of rain and then the contest was halted three separate times when different skunks ran out on the field.
“It’s definitely a distraction,” Bowen said of the critters. “That last time when it ran out toward the plate, I just ran out of the way.”
With the win finally in the books, Granier actually found the humor in the tense night.
“It was kind of funny,” he said. “I’d never really seen a skunk, being from Louisiana.”
Harrisonburg 010114 000 – 7 10 5 Staunton 100 000 130 – 5 3 2
Granier, Chapman (8), Styck (8) and Bowen; Schlosser, Yevoli (6), Deetjen (7), Adams (9) and Wright. W- Granier. L- Schlosser.