Wheeling rolls past Area One rival Moundsville
GLEN DALE – Baseball is a game that does not come with style points, only victories and losses.
However, if style points were awarded, Wheeling Post 1 may not have gotten many in its 10-error, doubleheader sweep of Wellsburg Post 34 on Monday.
But Tuesday was a different story, and while Manager Tom Pasco’s team wasn’t perfect, it definitely received high marks from its mentor.
Corey Walter limited Area One rival Moundsville Post 3 to three hits and Tim Mirandy broke the game open with a three-run homer in the third as Post 1 rolled to a surprising easy 10-0 American Legion decision on a muggy night at John Marshall High School.
The victory moves Wheeling to 7-1 heading into action at the Elkins Hillbilly Hardball Classic this weekend. Meanwhile, Manager Bill Burkett’s Moundsville team falls to 5-3 and heads out on a 14-day road trip that will include stops in Elkins and Hickory, N.C.
”That was a very fundamental baseball game and I am proud of these kids,” Pasco said. ”Monday we won two tough games but committed 10 errors. (Tuesday) we came back and knocked the cover off the ball, played good defense and got good pitching.”
Walter, the right-handed Wheeling Park High School graduate, allowed only three singles and two walks while fanning a pair. He needed 73 pitches and went to a 3-2 count on just one batter, that in the seventh inning.
Walter also did not allow a Post 3 baserunner past first base.
Post 1 scored the only run it needed in the top of the first as Jon-Michael Brunner led off with a double to deep left, moved to second on a Parker Lang sacrifice fly and crossed the dish on Alex Stephens’ RBI single through the box.
But the visitors broke things open with a four-run third that included Mirandy’s big blast.
Lang worked a four-pitch walk to begin the frame ahead of Stephens’ infield base hit. Scott Castilow’s single to center plated Lang with Stephens moving to third on an error.
Mirandy then launched a 1-1 pitch to deep center that clanked off the flag pole for a three-run shot and a 5-0 advantage.
The visitors added another in the fourth on Brunner’s second double, Lang’s sacrifice fly and the third of four Moundsville fielding miscues.
Wheeling pushed across two more in the sixth without the benefit of a hit before finishing the onslaught with a pair in the seventh.
”Corey was very efficient on the mound,” Pasco said. ”He was able to stay ahead in the count and when batters get behind 0-2 or 1-2 their batting averages normally go way down.
”These were a couple of back-to-back Area tests that we passed so I am very happy about that. Moundsville has some good, hard-nosed kids and they will rebound. Scores are not always indicative of how good or bad teams are and they are a team that will come back from this.”
For Post 3, however, it was a game in which it fell behind early and was never able to recover.
”We got behind and just acted like we were done,” Burkett said. ”We didn’t hit and they did, we didn’t catch the ball and they did. Unfortunately we have a long trip in front of us and there could be a lot more games like this.
”But who knows, a couple of plays here and there and we might still of at least been in the game. It just got away from us quick. The four-run inning was really the killer.”
Brunner, Stephens, Mirandy and Brian Coen all had two hits apiece for Post 1 while the Ohio County squad did not commit a fielding error. The victory was also the sixth straight for Wheeling.
Meanwhile, the game marked the second consecutive 10-0 loss for Moundsville, which fell to Fairmont Post 17 by that same margin on Sunday.
Post 3 has gone 13 innings without scoring a run.
Cadiz 12, Steubenville 2
CADIZ – D.J. Busby led a 13-hit attack with a single, double and four RBI as Cadiz (1-7) made quick work of Steubenville (7-6).
Winning pitcher Josh Kernick didn’t strike out or walk a batter, but he scattered 10 hits while helping his own cause with a pair of singles and an RBI. Kraig Kubancik added a home run for Cadiz.
Justin Teramana plated a run with a single and a double for Post 33, while Mitch Ludewig and Mickey Bednar evenly divided four hits.