W: Shawn O’Neill (3-1)
L: Jeff Conley (0-1)
Harrisonburg won the Southern Division in a winner-take-all Game 3 in Waynesboro tonight. The Turks led 2-1 in the seventh inning with two runners in scoring position and no outs when the game was called final final due to inclement weather.
Waynesboro right fielder Jojo Woods hit an RBI single to center in the bottom of the second inning to put Waynesboro on the board, but Harrisonburg would strike back in the fifth inning with two runs of their own. After left fielder David Perkins was thrown out at home in an unsuccessful scoring attempt, an infield error would load the bases for the team’s unsung hero, shortstop RJ Perucki.
Perucki then hit a 2-RBI single to center, scoring the tieing and go-ahead runs.
Later in the sixth frame, the game would be suspended because of weather for over an hour. The game would resume for one inning, but was once again called in the seventh– this time for good.
Four Turks finished with two hits, including Perucki and right fielder Ryan Brown.
Both teams combined for three runs, all of which were unearned.
Shawn O’Neill earned the win for Harrisonburg tonight. O’Neill typically closes games rather than starts them but specifically asked to take the mound for Harrisonburg tonight. With the season in his hands, he threw seven strikeouts and allowed just one run. He pitched until the weather (and the men wearing blue) declared him the winner.
Harrisonburg will represent the South in the final Valley League Championship Series for the Lineweaver Cup. Winchester will host Game 1 Wednesday night; Harrisonburg will return home for Game 2 Thursday, August 2.