Written By Adam Cherry Intern, LaSalle
Turks Fall to the Braves 6-5 It was a beautiful night for baseball at Ted Bosiack Field in downtown Staunton. The sun was shining, and there wasn't a cloud in the sky. Garret Ford (Georgia State) got the start for the Turks and he was facing off against Ryan Meisinger (Radford).
Sunday was the first time this season these two teams have squared off. Coming off last night's loss to Strasburg, the Turks were extra fired up to win. Both pitchers struggled to get through the first inning. Christopher Barr (Miami) started the inning off for the Turks by reaching base on an error by the short stop. Barr was then bunted over to second by Hunter King (UNCG). Eric Kalbfleisch(UNCG)then laced a single to left field. Matt Rose (GA State)then lined a base hit into center field scoring Christopher Barr from third for the first run of the game. Daniel Nichols (GA) then singled to center field, scoring Kalbfleisch from second base. Joey Roach then walked after a full count to load the bases. After another full count, McLean walked to score another run. The Braves started the bottom of the first with a blooper that fell right between Rose and Roach and a double down the line, Gunner McNeil came up and hit an opposite field home run, just over the 355 sign in right field. After the first inning, the score was tied 3-3. Thomas Spitz (Wingate) flexed his muscle in the second inning by hitting a double off the wall in left field. Eric Kalbfleisch continued his hot batting by hitting a single off the pitcher, moving runners to first and third. The Turks left the two base runners stranded and could not score. The defensive blunders carried over into the second inning. After a walk, two hitters were able to bunt their way on base because of bad defensive communication. Hunter King then made a phenomenal diving play up the middle to steal an out at second base. Garrett Ford made another great play with a chopper that went behind the mound, spinning and firing home to get the runner going home. At the end of the second inning, the Braves led, 4-3. The Braves started the third inning with a single. The next hitter then sacrificed the base runner to second base. With one out in the inning, Derek Gallello hit a single between the second and first basemen to score the runner from second. Jimmy Redovian was able to reach base because of another fielding error. Joey Rodriguez then hit a long fly ball off the wall in left field to score the runner from second. After the first pitch, Rodriguez stole second. Garret Ford was able to strike out the next hitter on three pitches. Thomas Spitz continued his hot hitting in the fourth by lacing a single over the third basemen's out stretched arms. The Turks were not able to bring him around to score however. The Braves were able to get runners on base with two outs, but after a diving play by Hunter King and a late throw to first, Christopher Barr made a great heads up play by throwing the ball to home to get the runner rounding third. The Turks brought James Ziemba Duke)in from the pen in the fifth inning to replace Garrett Ford. Ziemba was able to tower over the opposing hitters and go one, two, three. The 6'11" pitcher was able to pound fastballs in upon opposing hitters. Ziemba was able to continue his dominance throughout the rest of the game. The Turks were able to capitalize in the seventh inning scoring two more runs. Thomas Spitz was able to reach first base with one out on a fielding error by the second basemen. Hunter King was able to reach base by hitting a single to right field. The two runs were able to put the Turks behind by one. The stage was set in the ninth inning. Jace Whitely (Winthrop) led the ninth inning off with a hard ground ball back at the pitcher. He was not able to make the play giving the Turks a lead off runner. Whitley was able to advance to second on a wild pitch. The Turks were not able to score Whitley, ending the game in a 6-5 loss to the Braves. Garrett Ford takes the loss for the Turks (0-1). Ryan Meisinger (1-0) earns the Braves their first win of the season. Adam Cherry is a current Turks pitcher and writes feature recaps for Harrisonburg away games.