Tom Sox Squeeze Out 10-9 Win over River Bandits

The Charlottesville Tom Sox traveled to Woodstock Wednesday to take on the Valley League-leading River Bandits, bending but not breaking en route to a 10-9 victory.
Team Linescore
123456789R H E
Winner CHL Charlottesville 00235000010 12 1
WRB Woodstock 0001070019 11 1
Liam Best (1-0)
George Dobkowski (0-1)
Braden Halladay (1)


WOODSTOCK, Va. – The Charlottesville Tom Sox (4-2) traveled to Woodstock Wednesday to take on the Valley League-leading River Bandits (4-2), bending but not breaking en route to a 10-9 victory.

Charlottesville went scoreless in the top of the first before starter Logan Forsythe (Mississippi State) took the bump. He collected two strikeouts in a scoreless half inning of his own.

In the top of the second, the ‘Sox put runners on second and third, but could not capitalize on the opportunity. Forsythe returned to the mound and struck out the side in order with ease.

Charlottesville struck first in the top of the third. Hollis Porter (Mississippi State) and catcher Jake Bennett (San Jacinto) came around to score with some nifty baserunning and a Brady Gumpf (Notre Dame) infield RBI single. Meanwhile, Forsythe continued to cruise with another one-two-three inning, as the score held at 2-0.

The ‘Sox extended their lead in the top of the fourth as a Kyle Edwards (Old Dominion) RBI single brought around another run. A Porter walk, stolen base, and error brought Edwards in, and a Josh Tate (Georgia) single drove Porter in to bring the score to 5-0. Forsythe conceded his first run in the bottom of the inning after a leadoff triple from Ryan Storey of the River Bandits. However, he worked through additional traffic on the basepaths, collecting three more strikeouts. Forsythe exited a 5-1 game with nine strikeouts in four strong innings.

Charlottesville broke the game open in the fifth, plating five more runs. It started with back-to-back walks, which gave Justin Thomas (Georgia) the opportunity to knock an RBI single. After the team drew two more walks, Bennett chipped in with an RBI sacrifice fly. The inning was highlighted by an RBI double from Connor Hincks (Notre Dame), and another RBI single for Tate rounded out the offensive production in the inning. In the bottom of the fifth, Davian Garcia (Pasco-Hernando CC) entered for a perfect inning of relief.

The ‘Sox threatened but went without a run in the top of the sixth. Woodstock battled back in the bottom half— two walks, five singles, and an error, largely off of reliever Landen Burch (Old Dominion), allowed the River Bandits to scratch back seven total runs. Five runs scored before the Tom Sox recorded an out, as Burch exited the game without recording one. Liam Best (State College of Florida) entered to stop the bleeding, but not before the score tightened to 10-8.

Charlottesville went three-up, three-down in the top of the seventh. Best retired the first two Woodstock batters in the bottom half, before allowing a walk and a single. However, he honed in to force a grounder to second and maintain Charlottesville’s two-run advantage. The ‘Sox again went quietly in the top of the eighth, but Best remained strong, striking out two more in another scoreless inning of work. He recorded five strikeouts across three full innings of work.

The bats stayed cool in the ninth, which placed pressure on the bullpen to maintain the two-run lead and secure the win. After Braden Halladay (High Point) entered in relief, Woodstock scored one more on a bases loaded sacrifice fly. With two outs a walk re-loaded the bases, but Halladay forced a soft grounder to third which sealed the victory.

It was a game of runs, and ultimately the initial power of the ‘Sox was too much for the River Bandits to overcome— though it came down to the wire. Charlottesville defended its Valley League Championship title in a rematch of the finals from a year ago and tied Woodstock for the lead in the Valley League standings. Tate led the way on offense, going 2-for-3 with two RBI and a walk. Meanwhile, Forsythe and Best combined for 14 total strikeouts across seven innings and 119 total pitches.

Charlottesville with have Thursday off before traveling to Harrisonburg to face the Turks (4-2) Friday evening at Veterans Memorial Park.

Additional Notes

  • Hollis Porter collected his first three-hit game of the season and reached base in four of his five plate appearances.

  • All nine Charlottesville batters reached base on the night, while the top seven all did so with at least one hit. Four ‘Sox collected multi-hit games, a season high.

  • ‘Sox runners stole seven bases, their fourth of six games on the season with 6+ steals. Charlottesville has stolen 33 bases in six games, which leads the league, and is a perfect 33-for-33 on the basepaths.

  • Charlottesville faced sixteen different River Bandit batters on the night after seven different pinch hitters were used, including two in the 1-spot in the order. Woodstock’s pinch hitters combined to go 3-for-11 with three runs scored and one RBI courtesy of Ryan Cainzos in the 4-hole.

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