Clarke & TURKS Continue to Roll

7/5/04 – Written by Denise Wampler, JMU Communications Intern

The Harrisonburg TURKS (16-9), played host to the Staunton Braves (13-11), on July 5, at Veterans Memorial Stadium, where they collected their 16th win of the season. It was a back and forth game for the TURKS and the Braves, as the two teams exchanged the lead three times throughout the night. The Braves struck first, scoring one run, off two hits in the first inning. The TURKS retaliated in the bottom of the second to score two runs and seize the lead. Designated hitter, Matt Weglarz (Sophomore, SW Missouri State), started the two run inning for the TURKS, singling through to the left side. Second baseman, Cameron Clarke (Junior, Oklahoma City) followed Weglarz’s single with a two run homer to right center, collecting two RBI’s and giving the TURKS the go ahead run. This was the Australian natives’ second homer of the season. The Braves battled back in the top of the third to put another run on the board and even the score. Both teams posted a run in the fourth, keeping the game tied at 3-3. The TURKS run came as Weglarz lead off the inning, singling again, this time to center. Clarke connected on a double down the right field line, advancing Weglarz to third and setting up an RBI opportunity for shortstop, Gered Mochizuki (Freshman, Yavapai Junior College). Mochizuki responded, sending a sacrifice fly to left field, scoring Weglarz and tying the game at 4 a piece. Both teams were held scoreless in the fifth; however, the TURKS went on to regain the lead in the bottom of the sixth. Weglarz started the rally again, connecting on his third of three hits on the night, driving a double to left center. Weglarz went on to score off a single up the middle by Mochizuki, giving the TURKS the 4-3 advantage. The Braves didn’t back down; as they went on to post another run, off two hits in the top of the eighth, once again, tying the game; 4-4. The TURKS entered the bottom of the ninth looking to regain the lead. The TURKS answered, scoring one run off two hits. Corby Heckman (Junior, Indiana University), began the inning, singling to center. Heckman was replaced by pinch runner Kevin Koski (Freshman, Southern Illinois). First baseman, Joe Kemp (Junior, Indiana University), added another potential run to the bases, reaching first on a single to right center, advancing Koski to second. Pinch hitter, Ryan Parker, laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt, advancing Kemp to second and Koski to third. Clarke was intentionally walked, loading the bases with one out for Mochizuki. The Braves got Mochizuki to ground into a fielder’s choice where Koski was thrown out at home plate. With two outs, catcher, Matt Sluder (Sophomore, James Madison), came to the plate. Sluder reached first on a walk, picking up an RBI, and giving the TURKS the lead heading into the final inning of the game. The Braves struck out the final TURKS batter of the inning but the damage was done. The Braves were held scoreless in the top of the ninth, coming up one run short, and were handed their 11th loss of the year. The TURKS were lead offensively by Matt Weglarz, who was a perfect 3-3. Clarke was 2-3 (2 RBI’s). Centerfielder, Reggie Watson (Junior, Indiana University), also had two of the TURKS 12 hits on the night. Nick Pereria, started the game for the TURKS going 7 1/3 innings, giving up four runs, off seven hits, striking out five, and walking two. Reliever, Scott Brune (Sophomore, Iowa University) was credited with the win, as he improved to 2-1 on the year. The sophomore entered the game in the seventh, going 1 2/3 innings for the TURKS, giving up zero runs, off one hit, striking out none, and walking one. The TURKS remain the leaders of the Southern division, and will look to hold on to that position, as they host the Waynesboro Generals, at Veterans Memorial Stadium tomorrow night. Game time is 7:30 p.m. Come out and support your Harrisonburg TURKS! GO TURKS!