AP NEWS

Wolves get 10-0 mercy-rule win over SC

March 21, 2019

SPRING VALLEY — The facial hair of the Spring Valley baseball team is safe for another day.

Thanks to a 10-0 win in five innings over visiting South Charleston, pre-game talk that the Timberwolves’ players would shave off any facial hair if the team lost a fourth straight game Wednesday fell by the wayside after Spring Valley found its offense and held the Black Eagles to one hit while earning its first Mountain State Athletic Conference win of the season.

“It won’t have to come off,” said left fielder Cody Sharp running into the dugout following a post-game huddle with coach Austin Pratt.

Sharp singled in Han k Hinchman during a five-run second inning for Spring Valley (2-3, 1-2 MSAC) that broke the game open and chased South Charleston starter Addison Strickland from the game 1 2/3 innings into his outing. Spring Valley starter Seth Damron pitched a complete game, onehit shutout to earn the win.

Two errors for South Charleston (1-2, 0-2) in the bottom of the first inning led to Spring Valley’s first run and Hinchman’s run in the second made it 6-0 for the Timberwolves. Spring Valley added two more runs in the third inning when Tyrus Baumgardner singled in Tanner Akers and Hunter Bellomy to make it 8-0.

Wyatt Milum’s single in the fourth inning brought home Cameron Hodge for a 9-0 lead.

Following Tuesday’s loss at Huntington High, Pratt talked that his team didn’t seem motivated and it needed to start games as aggressively as it finished. That seemed to happen against South Charleston.

The Timberwolves swung at a lot of first pitches, putting them into play while South Charleston couldn’t overcome defensive miscues.

At bat, the Black Eagles were halted by Damron who had support from his defense that turned a double play and threw out a South Charleston runner trying to swipe second.

“When you put the ball in play early good things happen,” said Pratt. “Seth pitched a great game and kept them off balance.”

Pratt said in practice Monday he told his team to be more aggressive at the plate.

He said he thought his team was aggressive against Huntington High, although the hard hits the Timberwolves got always seemed to be at someone.

On Wednesday every hardhit ball found its way through the infield or took a tricky bounce on a South Charleston fielder that allowed the Timberwolves to get base runners.

Then there was the Black Eagles pitching.

Strickland and his replacement Sheffield combined to walk five Spring Valley hitters over three innings. Sheffield walked three during the third inning.

Pratt went with a different batting order against South Charleston, dropping Baumgardner to the eighth spot and also moving Sharp, Bellomy and Bailey McKinney.

He said he was unsure if he would use the same lineup against Parkersburg when the Big Reds come to town Friday for a 6 p.m. game.

SOUTH CHARLESTON 000 00 -- 0 1 4

SPRING VALLEY 152 11 -- 10 9 0

Strickland, Sheffield (2), Sizemore (5) and Sizemore, Akers (5); Damron and Akers, Hinchman (5).

Hitting: (SC) Burke 1-2. (SV) Baumgardner 2-2, 2 RBIs; Bellomy 1-2, 2B, RBI