Fans Enjoy June is Dairy Night and a Turks Win

Written by Nathan Rishel
Staff Writer

Harrisonburg, VA – The Harrisonburg Turks (6-10) squared off against the Woodstock River Bandits (7-9) on a sunny Wednesday evening that saw a soar in attendance as fans enjoyed being special guests to “June is Dairy Month Pack the Park Night” compliments of twelve generous dairy sponsors with their coupon in the DNR.

The Turks had a rough beginning to the game, as second baseman Austin Embler gave up the first error on Woodstock’s first hit, allowing Danton Hyman to reach first. Two stolen bases and a second Harrisonburg error later, and the River Bandits went up 1-0. At the bottom of the first, Embler looked to rectify his fielding errors at bat, but fast defense by the River Bandits resulted in outs for both Embler and Ty Andrus, who had walked to first on four balls moments earlier.

In the following innings, the Turks cleaned up defensively and would commit no errors for the remainder of the contest. At the bottom of the third, shortstop Tevin Mitchell—whose speed and accuracy in throwing to first resulted in numerous putouts for Harrisonburg throughout the night—cranked one out of the park to level the score.

One inning later, third baseman Brendon Venter reached home on an unearned run after an error by the River Bandit’s second baseman to give the Turks a 2-1 advantage. After the lead change, Harrisonburg went on to score two runs in both of the next two innings while shutting Woodstock’s batting lineup down completely.

The seventh and top of the eighth inning did not change the scoreboard despite personnel changes for both teams; however, the Turks, having tasted blood, were eager to kill again and would claim three more runs to solidify the win.

Head coach Bob Wease elected to rely on substitute Hunter Seay to bolster Harrisonburg’s defense at the top of the eighth, and the outfielder exceeded expectations by hitting a hard grounder to left field for a double before sprinting to third on a wild pitch. Seay would go on to score and was followed by Tevin Mitchell for his second run of the night. Pinch-hitter Cade Bullinger was next to reach home with the bases loaded, but a putout at first for the third out prevented further damage to Woodstock.

The Turks began the ninth by bringing a new pitcher and catcher, Eric Yankey and Andrew Llewellyn respectively, into the game, resulting in three outs in quick succession and a final score of 9-1.

Elated by a two-game win streak, Harrisonburg will travel to face the Covington Lumberjacks Thursday night in hopes of a three-peat.