Turks Top Jacks in Lightning-shortened Game

By Dave Norman
Webcast Broadcaster

Harrisonburg–The Turks defeated the Covington Lumberjacks 5-1 at Veteran’s Memorial Park in a game that was called after 6 2/3 innings due to persistent lightning in the area.

Right hand pitcher Kyle Arjona (New Orleans) pitched all six innings for Harrisonburg, scattering six hits and allowed just one run in his first appearance as a Turks. Arjona used a tailing fastball, sharp slider and curve to strike out six and walk just one.

The Turks were on the board as Caleb Walls (Pasco Hernando State) doubled to left, Zach Little (Wingate) singled with two outs to put runner at the corners. With Brett Whelton (McNeese State) at the plate, Little broke for second, drew a throw and Walls raced in stealing home for a 1-0 lead.

The Jacks scored their only run of the game in the 2nd inning as JC Santos singled and came around to score later on an RBI groundout by Benny Serrano, tying the game at 1-1.

Harrisonburg immediately took the lead for good as Cam Irvine (Virginia Tech) doubled to the gap in right center and Luke Nussman (Shenandoah) followed with another double to nearly the same spot.

After a couple of outs, Grant Van Scoy (Illinois) singed to centerfield to score Nussman.

Jacks starter, lefty Tyler Burnham settled down and matched Arjona with an effective mix of pitches running a string of three scoreless frames for each hurler.

In the 6th, the Turks plated an insurance run pushing the lead to 4-1. With one out, Little collected his second single of the night and advanced to 2nd base on an errant pickoff attempt. Whelton singled and Nussman drew a walk to load the bases. Returning Turk Austin Embler (UNC-Greenboro) pinch hit for Tristan Baker (Shenandoah) and drew a walk to force in Little.

In the 7th, the Jacks mounted their best rally of the game as JC Santos singled and with one out Turks shortstop Van Scoy mishandled a would-be, inning-ending double play ball putting runners at first and second base. Benny Serrano singled to right to load the bases.

Arjona, who seemed as sharp as earlier in the game, fanned Bennett Hostetler on a low and outside slider that briefly got away from Whelton the Turks catcher who recovered and threw down to 3rd base where JC Santos had wandered too far off the bag. One throw back to Arjona covering the plate and he tagged him for the final out to squelch the uprising.

In the home half of the 7th, Van Scoy was hit by the first pitch from Zachary Burch who had relieved Burnham. A wild pitch put Van Scoy at 2nd base where Paul Castillo (Eastern Florida) drove him in with a single to make it 5-1. Castillo stole second and Little was struck out for out number two.

At that time, the lightening alarm sounded, causing a delay that persisted and eventually forced the game declared final at 5-1.

 

  

Little paced the Turks with 2 hits and Van Scoy, Castillo, Nussman and Embler all drove in runs. Arjona (1-0) took the victory and Burnham (0-1) the loss.

Harrisonburg (3-2) travels to Waynesboro on Saturday. Game time is 7:00 at Kate Collins Field. The next Turks home game is Monday as Covington (3-2) returns to Veteran’s Memorial Park. Game time is 7:30.