Turks Get the Win in the Bottom of 14th

Written by Bennett Conlin
Broadcasting Intern

Snap, crack, pop. No, fans weren’t eating bowls of Rice Krispies as it felt like night was turning into morning in Friday’s 14-inning marathon game between Harrisonburg and Charlottesville, but the Turks did use three hard-hit balls to earn a thrilling 4-3 walk-off victory over the division-leading TomSox.

With one out in the bottom of the 14th, Tony Beam smacked a single to start the Turks’ rally. After Tanner Dofflemyer flew out to right field, Zach Kuchmaner tallied his third single of the day to push Beam to second. This set the stage for Ty Andrus, who has recorded at least one hit in every game this season.

  Andrus, a singles machine, took the first pitch he saw into the right field corner for a walk-off single that easily scored Beam and sent the remaining fans in attendance into a frenzy.

Prior to Andrus’ heroics, both teams used incredible performances from relievers to keep the game scoreless in the eighth through 13th frames. For the TomSox, Nick Roth fired 7 ⅔ innings and didn’t allow a run until Andrus’ single. He struck out three batters, while allowing just six hits. Roth pounded the strike zone as 53 of his 65 pitches were strikes.

Davis Kirkpatrick earned the victory for the Turks, and the ‘W’ was certainly deserved for the East Carolina product. Kirkpatrick threw eight innings without allowing a run, while he fanning six Charlottesville batters.

While it seemed like eons ago at the end of the contest, the Turks struck first in the second inning. Kyle McCann, a powerful hitter from Georgia Tech, worked the count and eventually drew a walk. Chase Smartt, who hit a triple in the victory, bunted McCann to second. A single from Austin Embler eventually scored McCann and gave the Turks the early lead.

Harrisonburg pushed another run across in the bottom of the third to hand starting pitcher Mason Studstill a two-run lead. Studstill threw six innings, while allowing three runs (two earned) and striking out five.

After trading runs in the sixth, the TomSox used infield and bunt singles as well as a throwing error from the Turks to tie the game 3-3 in the seventh. The two teams then used their dominant relievers to keep the game knotted until Andrus’ walk-off single in the 14th.

Harrisonburg will finish off its three-game homestand on Saturday night against Staunton. First pitch is slated for the usual 7:30 p.m. If you can’t make it out to the ballpark, go to Harrisonburgturks.com and click on ‘Listen Live” to hear the live webcast. Dave Norman and Bennett Conlin will have the call.