Turks Nip Braves

6/25/05 – Daily News Record

Harrisonburg Holds On For 3-2 Win By JUSTIN GERMAN Special Correspondent Tony Thomas did what a leadoff hitter is supposed to do. The Turks second baseman went 1-for-2 with two walks Friday to help Harrisonburg snap their three-game home losing streak with a 3-2 victory over Staunton in a Valley League baseball game at Memorial Stadium. The Turks improved to 10-9; the Braves fell to 10-9. Both teams are now tied for second in the Southern Division standings behind Covington. Thomas (Florida State) started the first inning with a leadoff single, then stole second base. He moved over to third on a wild pitch and then came home when shortstop Josh Richardson (Indiana) tried to steal second. "My job is to get on base and cause confusion," said Thomas. "I just like to play my own ball and put pressure on them to make plays." Thomas scored the Turks’ second run in the third inning, after drawing a leadoff walk. Lucas Delong (San Francisco) drove in Thomas with a RBI-single. Richardson would score later in the inning to give the Turks a 3-0 advanatge. Sean Jarrett (Arizona) got the win for Harrisonburg, improving his record to 1-0 on the season. "The guys are starting to relax a bit," Turks coach Bob Wease said. "I thought we played with a lot more poise tonight. The guys are starting to learn that we’re not going to yell at them if they screw up." Former Stuarts Draft High School standout Jake Rule (William & Mary) pitched a solid game in his first start for the Braves, but ended up with the loss, dropping his record to 1-1. Rule allowed five hits and two earned runs in six innings, along with nine strikeouts. "He had one start this year as a college pitcher and its something he wants to do," Braves coach Lawrence Nesselrodt said. "He settled down after a shaky first couple innings, but a good performance. The leadoff walk just really hurt us in the third inning." Shortstop Andy Kiriakedes was 2-for-4 with two singles to lead the Braves on offense. Things don’t get any easier for Harrisonburg in the next few days. The Turks play their 11th game in 12 days tonight at Winchester and then travel to Luray Sunday for a matchup against the Wranglers. Staunton 000 002 000 —2 9 2 Harrisonburg 102 000 00x —3 6 2 Rule, Wells (7), Renfrow (8) and Bernstine. Jarrett, Kovac (7), Benson (7), Fessler (9) and Denker. W—Jarrett (1-0); L—Rule (1-1); S—Fessler (6).