Onda Powers Turks Past Braves in Home Finale
W: Logan Onda (4-2)
L: Sam Vincenzo (0-1)
S: Adam Cherry (6)
A great outing by starter Logan Onda and plenty of extra-base hits fueled Harrisonburg through its last home game of the 2013 regular season. In a game that was never really in doubt, the Turks clinched the best record in the Valley League and assured themselves home field advantage throughout the playoffs.
Harrisonburg led 5-0 in the top of the seventh inning. Onda had only allowed two hits through the first six innings, but he gave up back-to-back singles to DH James Vasquez and catcher Mike Adkins. First baseman Jake Fryman hit an RBI-single that scored Vasquez before Onda could get out of the inning, and Staunton was finally on the board.
In the eighth, reliever Zach Sightler came in for Onda, but he got jammed up quick. With no outs and the bases loaded, Sightler was facing Vasquez as the tying run at the plate. He hit a base hit into right field that scored pinch runner Nick Corbin from third to bring the score to 5-2, but Vasquez was thrown out when he rounded first looking for an extra base.
Closer Adam Cherry came in to make the final five outs. With two runners in scoring position, he recorded two strikeouts to end the inning and strand Staunton behind a 3-run deficit. Taylor Nichols pushed it to a 4-run lead bottom of the eighth when Braves third baseman Zach Fisher failed to catch his popout, and Jace Whitley brought him home two batters late.
Cherry notched two more strikeouts in the top of the ninth before making it official.
The Turks (31-12) blistered Staunton early on, posting two runs in the third, another in the fourth and two more in the fifth. They got on the board when right fielder John Welborn walked and stole second, then second baseman Andy Perez doubled deep into left center and scored Welborn. Perez took third for his league-best 29th stolen base, and when Staunton catcher Mike Adkins overthrew third on the steal, Perez came home.
Onda finished allowing one run on five hits through seven full innings. He recorded eight strikeouts. For Cherry, four strikeouts matches a single-game high, which he first achieved in the season opener against Covington on May 31.
At the plate, DH Joe Napolitano finished 2 of 3 with 2 RBI. Left fielder Eric Kalbfleisch finished 2 of 4 with a run scored.
Perez, Napolitano, Kalbfleisch, third baseman Thomas Smith, and shortstop RJ Perucki all recorded doubles.
Harrisonburg will play its final regular season game in Woodstock Thursday night.