By MICHAEL CHILDERS, CJ Correspondent
So far in the 2013 high school baseball season, Somerset has had problems at the plate and with their overall level of intensity.
Both of those issues came to play in the Briar Jumpers’ match-up with Richmond Model on Monday night at Charlie Taylor Field. But despite those issues, Phil Grundy and the Jumpers were able to get past the visiting Patriots of Model by a final score of 11-7.
Though the Jumpers finished with 12 hits on 11 runs, Grundy feels that his team is capable of doing much more at the plate than they have shown so far this year.
“We hit the ball when we needed to, but we’re still not hitting the ball all the way through the line-up,” began Grundy, who saw his team move one game over .500 at 5-4 with the four-run victory over the Patriots. “We’ve not been hitting the ball all-year, but now that we are nine games into the year, it’s time to start cranking it up.”
To find the best line-up possible, the veteran Somerset baseball coach is mixing things up on the field to find the nine guys that want to play the most.
“Our guys are going through the motions - we’re going to rotate some guys in and out,” Grundy explained. “We need to find guys that are hungry and want to play at a high level of baseball. We’ve got five or six guys playing really hard and three or four are not clicking yet. It’s going to be a work in-progress for the next couple of weeks.”
Somerset began the contest with four unanswered runs, as they scored one each in the first and second innings, and added two more in the bottom of the fourth frame. Four innings into the contest, the ‘Purple and Gold’ had cruised out to a 4-0 lead over Model.
Aaron Dockey, pinch-running for Charlie Dishman, tallied the Jumpers’ first of 11 runs on the night on an RBI single from Bryson Jones. In the second frame, Heath Ehrsam would reach home on a fielder’s choice by Addison Thompson, putting Somerset out front by a pair of runs.
The Jumpers plated two runs in the fourth inning to grab a four-run advantage over Model. Justin Smith, who came into the game to pinch-run for Jacob Pelston after he double, scored on a double from Dishman. Dockey got his second run of the night in the same inning, scoring on an error.
Model cut the Somerset lead to a mere run in the fifth inning after scoring three runs on four hits. After the Patriots tallied a trio of runs in the top of the fifth, Somerset roared back with five runs of their own to widen the gap at 9-3.
Ehrsam and Smith, who each singled to get on base, both scored on a triple from Thompson, giving the Jumpers a three-run lead at 6-2. After Thompson scored on a Pelston walk, Dishman blasted a ball over the left field wall for a two-run home run that allowed Grundy and company to lead by six runs.
The Patriots took advantage of four Somerset errors in the sixth inning, as they scored four runs to cut the Jumper lead to a pair of runs at 9-7. In the bottom half of the sixth, Somerset picked up two runs on a single from Ehrsam and an error by the Patriots.
Somerset would take the game by an 11-7 tally, which allowed them to up their record to 5-4 on the 2013 season.
Pelston, who had five strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings for Somerset, was credited with the victory. In five-plus innings on the hill, the Somerset pitcher had six unearned runs.
At the plate, Dishman and Jones both had two hits each for Somerset. Dishman had a double and a home run, along with a three RBI’s, while Jones finished with two singles and an RBI.
Thompson had three RBI’s in the contest to go along with a triple, while Ehrsam and Pelston each chimed in with an RBI.
The Jumpers were back in action last night at Charlie Taylor Field, hosting 12th Region opponent McCreary Central.
MOD - 0 0 0 0 3 4 0 - 7 10 0
SHS - 1 1 0 2 5 2 X - 11 12 4
WP: Pelston (SHS)
LP: Adams (MOD)
S: Purcell (SHS)
2B: Jones, Hamilton (MOD); Pelston, Dishman (SHS)
3B: Thompson (SHS)
HR: Dishman (SHS)
RBI: Jones 2, Middleton (MOD); Thompson 3, Dishman 3, Pelston, Jones, Ehrsam (SHS)