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‘Sox Win Back-to-Back Games over the Braves

For the second time in two days, the Charlottesville Tom Sox (15-4) and Staunton Braves (10-10) squared off in a battle of two of the top three teams in the VBL South Division. A pitching duel took hold of Willie T. Barnett Baseball Field that saw four C’Ville pitchers hold the road invaders to two runs, earning the team a 6-2 win.

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Team Linescore
123456789R H E
SB Staunton 0001000012 6 2
Winner CHL Charlottesville 10000203X6 7 2
W:
Brett Gastman (3-1)
L:
Trey Jackson (0-1)
S:
Ayden Alexander (1)

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — For the second time in two days, the Charlottesville Tom Sox (15-4) and Staunton Braves (10-10) squared off in a battle of two of the top three teams in the VBL South Division. A pitching duel took hold of Willie T. Barnett Baseball Field that saw four C’Ville pitchers hold the road invaders to two runs, earning the team a 6-2 win.

The first frame favored the home team as Dean Mihos (Coastal Carolina) lined a single into the outfield and reached second base on a throwing error. After a Tommy Roldan (Virginia) walk, Colby Wallace (East Carolina) hit a high fly ball into right field that was caught, allowing Mihos to trot home for the game’s first run.

“The first day I showed up trying to scramble to figure out names and get in the lineup,” Mihos said. “Our chemistry is getting better and, I think, as a team we’re starting to play the entirety of the game, not just right off the bat.”

With a 1-0 lead, Thomas Whelan (Davidson) dealt three scoreless innings for the ‘Sox, striking out two Braves while allowing just two walks and one hit. 

The righty faced his first true test of the evening in the fourth, when Staunton’s four through nine hitters erased the shutout on the board. It started with Wyatt Campbell singling to center field and advancing around the diamond on a fielder’s choice, single and an error to tie the game at one.

A scoreless fifth and top of the sixth by reliever Brett Gastman (Charleston Southern) set the Tom Sox back up to take control.

“Thomas [Whelan] came out and established right away and got a sense of the game,” Head Coach Randy Tomlin said. “They were feeding off each other and Brett [Gastman] behind him did the same thing… and then Marco [Levari] did an outstanding job.”

With runners on the corners, Nick Parham (East Carolina) popped up into left field for seemingly the final out of the inning, but an error by the left fielder brought Jake Books (Coastal Carolina) and Ryan Wynn (Wofford) across home plate to give the ‘Sox the lead once again by a score of 3-1.

Gastman’s day came to an end in the seventh inning when he was replaced by Marco Levari (Old Dominion), who closed out the inning with a strikeout to strand a runner on base.

Two walks and a Wynn single through the gap in right juiced the bases for the Tom Sox in the eighth. Parham walked moments later, scoring Johnnie Lopez (Seminole State) before Cale Stricklin (Auburn) dug in and chopped one into the outfield to add two more runs for the ‘Sox.

Trailing 6-1, the Braves didn’t go down quietly in the ninth as they loaded the bases. Levari battled to get one out, but ended up walking in the second and final run of the night for the road warriors.

Ayden Alexander (George Washington) entered the game to slam the door shut with a strikeout and flyout, handing Charlottesville a 6-2 win — its 15th of the year.

“Go get him,” Alexander was told when entering the game. “That was really it. [Coach Tomlin] has been good with having a lot of faith in me. I love it and all my guys make plays for me so it’s awesome,” said Alexander.


UP NEXT:

The Tom Sox improve to 15-4 on the summer and remain atop the Valley Baseball League. They’ll make the long journey to Covington on Wednesday to face the Lumberjacks (7-11) after the VBL Prospect Game on Monday and an off-day on Tuesday.

ADDITIONAL NOTES:

  • Charlottesville advances to 9-1 at home on the year.

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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