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‘Sox Slug in Sizzling Heat for 11-5 Win over Staunton

The Charlottesville Tom Sox (14-4) blazed through Saturday’s summer heat on the road against the Staunton Braves (10-9) after a fast start from the offense. Capitalizing on multiple errors, stolen bases, and a major home run by Johnnie Lopez (Seminole State), the ‘Sox earned an 11-5 win to maintain their stranglehold on the VBL South Division.

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Team Linescore
123456789R H E
Winner CHL Charlottesville 01012421011 12 3
SB Staunton 0020002015 8 4
W:
Bobby Olsen (2-0)
L:
Hunter Jones (1-1)

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STAUNTON, Va.  The Charlottesville Tom Sox (14-4) blazed through Saturday’s summer heat on the road against the Staunton Braves (10-9) after a fast start from the offense. Capitalizing on multiple errors, stolen bases, and a major home run by Johnnie Lopez (Seminole State), the ‘Sox earned an 11-5 win to maintain their stranglehold on the VBL South Division.

The Tom Sox struck first in the top of the second inning as Ethan Gibson (Virginia Tech) drew a bases-loaded walk — his team-leading 20th base on balls of the season — to drive in Jake Books (Coastal Carolina). Books had gotten the rally started with a single into right field before swiping his first bag of the season on a double steal with Nick Parham (East Carolina), who reached base on a Staunton error.

The Braves quickly swung the momentum back in their favor as Jake D’Altrui hit a two-run home run to take the lead in the third, 2-1.

The Staunton lead would be short-lived, however, as Parham bunted for a base hit and moved himself into scoring position with a stolen base in the top of the fourth, setting the stage for Lopez to drill an RBI double into deep right field and tie the game 2-2. 

The Tom Sox would break the tie in the fifth, scoring two runs on one hit, one walk, and another Braves error to take a 4-2 lead. Robbie Lavey (George Washington) got the inning started with a one-out walk before Books continued his big night with a double into right field. With runners on second and third, Sam Mummau (Florida) reached base on a throwing error by the Staunton shortstop that allowed Lavey and Books to come around to score.

The Charlottesville avalanche continued in the sixth as the ‘Sox sent eight batters to the plate in the frame, plating four on five hits and two more errors by a sloppy Staunton defense to take an 8-2 lead. Dean Mihos (Coastal Carolina) doubled off the right-field wall to lead off the inning before Gibson grounded one into left for an RBI single. After a Lopez single, Gibson showed off his wheels, stealing home on a nifty double steal by the ‘Sox. Later in the frame, Books continued his offensive success with another hit to bring home Tommy Roldan (Virginia).

The ‘Sox and Braves would trade runs the rest of the way, scoring two each in the seventh and one each in the top of the eighth and bottom of the ninth, respectively. 

The highlight of the night for Charlottesville came in the top of the seventh when Lopez launched one over the trees for his third home run of the season, a two-run shot to give the ‘Sox a 10-2 lead.

Not to be outdone, Lavey cranked his fourth long ball of the season in the top of the eighth, adding some insurance for Chase Stryker (Coastal Carolina) and Colby Wallace (ECU) who combined for 2.2 scoreless innings to close things out on the mound. The pair fanned seven Braves down the stretch, securing the ‘Sox 14th win of the season.


UP NEXT:

The Tom Sox will be back home tomorrow at 7 p.m. to take on the Staunton Braves for the second-straight day.

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

  • The Tom Sox are 3-0 against the Braves since dropping the season opener.
  • Charlottesville hit multiple home runs for the first time since June 11 against Covington. The same two players who homered in that game – Lavey and Lopez – homered tonight.
  • Lopez collected his team-leading sixth multi-hit game on the year.
  • Ethan Sutton has tossed at least four innings and allowed two or fewer runs in each of his last three starts.

Related Stories

Tom Sox Extend Division Lead with Road Win over Turks

Ryan Wynn set a Tom Sox record with two triples as the Charlottesville Tom Sox (21-9) defeated the Harrisonburg Turks (18-10) by a 9-3 score at Veterans Memorial Park on Saturday. Wynn drove in four of Charlottesville’s nine runs as they extended their South division lead back to two games. 

Tom Sox Toppled by Turks in Extras

After a grueling pitchers' duel, the Harrisonburg Turks (18-9) bested the Charlottesville Tom Sox (20-9) in extra innings at Charlottesville High School on Thursday evening. The visitors posted two runs in the top of the tenth to break the tie and take a 3-1 victory on 'Virginia Athletics Night' at the ballpark. 

‘Sox Drop Marathon Game in Staunton

On a humid evening at John Moxie Memorial Stadium, the Charlottesville Tom Sox (20-8) dropped a slugfest against the Staunton Braves (12-14) by a score of 11-10 in 11 innings. Despite multiple rallies throughout the contest, the ‘Sox fell just short in a four-and-a-half-hour affair – the longest contest by time in team history (4:35).

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