Harrisonburg Outlasts Front Royal 2-0, wins fourth straight
W: Connor Kaden (2-0)
L: Dalton Potts (2-1)
S: Logan Onda (1)
The Turks were locked in a vicious pitching battle for much of the night, with neither team gaining a decisive advantage for much of the evening. But Harrisonburg finally broke through in the bottom of the 7th, scoring the only two runs of the game and locking up the team’s fourth straight victory.
Neither the Turks (9-5) nor the Cardinals (6-8) could muster more than two hits through six innings, but the seventh frame changed all that. Front Royal left fielder Jamal Clarke reached on a single, and the Cardinals looked poised to strike first. Clarke, however, tripped over himself on a pickoff attempt and was run down by first baseman Mike Warren. Third baseman Andrew Murphy grounded out to second, but shortstop Jean Cardenas smashed a triple to deep right field.
On the cusp of scoring the game’s first run, first baseman Brandon Tierney grounded out to first base, and Front Royal’s best last hope of scoring fizzled out.
In the bottom of the inning with two outs, second baseman Thomas Smith hit a blooper into shallow right with loads of backspin, and it rolled backward onto the warning track. Smith turned on the gas and turned his single into a double, and Turks third baseman Joe Napolitano brought him home during the next at bat with a single to right center. Left fielder Eric Kalbfleisch brought Napolitano home next, who had advanced to second on the previous play’s throw to home, to finalize the score at 2-0.
Connor Kaden earns the win tonight after pitching seven innings of scoreless baseball. He struck out six and walked four. Logan Onda, who struck out another three in two innings of closeout pitching, earned his first save of the season.
Kalbfleisch had the only multi-hit performance of the game for either team, finishing 2 of 3 with an RBI.
The Turks’ 2-0 victory is their fourth straight dating back to a 4-3 victory in Waynesboro last Friday evening. It is also their second straight shutout.
A PROGRAMMING NOTE: Due to a scheduling error, the Turks will play at Woodstock on Saturday night, and they will host the River Bandits on Sunday night. Please adjust your calendars accordingly.