Tom Sox Defeat Turks, 8-3
Six runs in the first three innings, as well as a strong pitching performance and a string of bobbled plays from opponents in the outfield, led the Charlottesville Tom Sox (8-3) to their sixth straight victory against the Harrisonburg Turks (7-5), 8-3.
The Charlottesville pitching staff kept the Turks without a hit through six innings. Starting pitcher Jake Hershman, coming into the outing with a 0.00 ERA on the season, managed to preserve his perfect record, holding Harrisonburg without a run in the first four innings and allowing only two walks to his four strikeouts.
This dominant performance on the mound was matched by a strong outing for Charlottesville’s offense. A two-run double from Max Bazin in the bottom of the first, RBI hits from Zac Ching and Patrick McColl in the second and another two-run hit from David Harding in the third put the home team up 6-0 after the first three innings.
Jared Wetherbee relieved Hershman in the fifth by quickly striking out three batters. When Wetherbee faltered in the sixth by opening the inning with two walks, Cody Maw was called in to close out the frame. Although one Harrisonburg runner scored on a fielder’s choice, Maw threw two strikeouts to get the Tom Sox out of the sixth still ahead, 6-1.
The Turks cut the Tom Sox lead in half in the top of the seventh as a two-RBI single from Cameron Irvine got the visitors within three, 6-3. But with an error forced by Cole Vann in the bottom of the seventh and an RBI single from Ching in the bottom of the eighth, the Tom Sox regained a six-run lead. Maw kept the Turks from getting any closer to a tie, striking out three batters in the final two innings to allow the home team to claim the victory, 8-3. In total, Hershman, Wetherbee and Maw combined for 15 strikeouts while only allowing three hits.
Charlottesville’s 12 hits ties for their second-best total at bat this season (their record sits at 14, from their 17-6 win over Woodstock on June 12.) The Turks tallied eight errors on the night as defenders struggled to contain persistent offense from the Tom Sox. Nick DiPonzio, lead-off batter and former Turk, tallied two runs and one hit, while Max Bazin went three-for-three at the plate and scored two runners. McColl and Ching each extended their hitting streaks, McColl to eleven games and Ching to nine.
With the Father’s Day victory, the Tom Sox improve to 8-12 all-time against the Turks and 6-0 over the last six outings, extending back to the 2017 season. They will look to preserve their standing at first place in the VBL South as they travel to take on Waynesboro Generals (5-5) on Monday.