Cannons Complete Season Sweep of Turks after 9 Runs in Final Two InningsBy Chase Kiddy | Harrisonburg Turks Staff Writer
W: Jack Charleston (3-2)
L: James Ziemba (0-4)
Harrisonburg blew a late 3-1 lead on Tuesday night, allowing two runs in the top of the ninth and a fatal seven runs in the top of the tenth.
So often the comeback kids themselves, the Turks saw a reversal of fortunes in their fourth game of the season against Charles Town. Clinging to a 3-1 lead in the top of the ninth, all Harrisonburg (24-13) and newly installed pitcher Tanner Shelton needed to do was find a way to three outs without giving up a pair of runs.
But Charles Town found a way to tie the game. Cannons first baseman Austin Bream reached first on an infield single in the hole, fielded by third baseman Matt Rose. But when Rose popped up off the ground to attempt the throw to first, his throw was off the mark, and Bream reached second on the error.
Bream was promptly replaced by pinch runner William Endris, and he reached third when right fielder Bryant Munoz lined a single into left field.
Endris scored on the second error of the inning, when center fielder Justin Harris laid down a bunt that Shelton did not cleanly throw to first. Munoz reached third when Shelton’s throw sailed into shallow right field; he tied the game when shortstop Stephen Kerr laid down another bunt that was too difficult for Shelton to field in time.
In the tenth inning, Harrisonburg elected to put James Ziemba on the mound. Ziemba gave up a single, a double, and three walks before accidentally beaming Chris Townsend. Three runners scored while Ziemba was on the mound, all while advancing on wild pitches.
When Harrisonburg finally replaced Ziemba with center fielder Thomas Spitz to get out of the inning, he gave up a grand slam on his first pitch, finalizing the score at 10-3 when the Turks couldn’t plate anyone in the bottom of the inning.
Charles Town’s Jack Charleston earned the win in two innings of late relief, allowing only one hit and one walk.
Despite the loss, Harrisonburg retains its first place status with half a week’s worth of games left to play after Front Royal’s . Harrisonburg plays Aldie (16-23) on Wednesday night; they return home for a game with New Market (15-23) on Friday night.
Chase Kiddy has served as the Harrisonburg Turks’ staff writer since Spring 2012. Contact him at email@example.com, or yell at him in the press box during home games at Veterans Memorial Park.