GREENVILLE — Wilson Memorial broke open a close game with four runs in the fifth inning and the Hornets went on to defeat the Riverheads Gladiators, 8-1, Tuesday afternoon in Shenandoah District baseball action.
Riverheads scored first when Landon Lightner walked, stole second and raced home on a Ryan Farris double in the bottom of the first inning for a 1-0 Riverheads lead.
Wilson grabbed the lead with two runs in the third. Grayson Wright and Tanner Leche opened the inning with back-to-back singles. With one out, an infield single by Matthew Bobsin loaded the bases. Coby Sprouse singled to left, scoring Wright to tie the score and Mason McDowell’s sacrifice fly scored Leche to put the Hornets ahead, 2-1.
The Hornets put four more runs on the board in the fifth to break the game open. Wilson loaded the bases as two batters were hit by a pitch and a third reached on an error. With the bases full, Coby Sprouse plated a run with a groundout, making the score 3-1. McDowell followed with a two-run double to left, increasing the margin to 5-1. Another Riverheads error led to the final run of the inning and a 6-1 Wilson lead.
Wilson added its final two runs in the top of the seventh on a run-scoring single by Jacob Wakefield and a RBI-groundout by Wright for the final 8-1 margin.
Tuesday’s contest marked the middle game of a three games in three days stretch for both teams.
With pitching at a premium, Wilson head coach Rodney Cullen sent Bobsin to the mound and the freshman delivered a complete-game, three hitter. The righty shut out the home teams over the final six innings. Bobsin struck out six and walked two.
“What a game he pitched,” said Cullen. “The second half of the season, he’s pitched really well. Usually his pitch count gets up and we’ll get him out of the game. That didn’t happen today. He got ahead of the hitters, threw strikes and kept his pitch count down.”
The win was a nice bounce back for the Hornets after losing Monday to the Staunton Storm.
“We played really good defense today. Grayson made a great play over at third on a ground ball. We only had one error today and Mason got a tough hop on that ball that was hit to short,” said Cullen.
Wilson’s offense also came to life after Cullen and his coaches shuffled the batting order.
“I thought we got back to hitting the ball today the way we’re capable of hitting. We’ve been struggling the last few games aa a team so we decided the shake things up and move some guys around in the lineup. Sometimes changing things up is all you need to get things going.”
McDowell led the Hornets with two hits and three RBIs. Wakefield also had two base hits.
Wilson, now 7-4, closes out the regular season Wednesday when the Hornets host Fort Defiance. Riverheads, now 6-5, plays its final regular season game on Wednesday at Stuarts Draft.
WILSON MEMORIAL 8, RIVERHEADS 1
WILSON 002 040 2 — 8 9 1
RIVERHEADS 100 000 0 — 1 3 3
Bobsin and Cameron Sprouse. Dunlap, Farris (3), Morris (6), Lightner (7) and Farris, Thompson (3).
WP—Bobsin. LP Dunlap. HR—none.