Well, if opening night is any indication, Harrisonburg's brand new Veterans Memorial Park will suppress runs. Of course, this is only the first game, and often hitters are behind the pitchers at this point, but on this night, the pitchers ruled, save for one batter.
The Turks started their night off with a bang, scoring a single run in the bottom of the first inning when Brett Armour singled in Joe Huber, who had led off the inning with a double. Little did the Turks know, but they wouldn't score again. In fact, they didn't even get another hit until the 9th inning.
The Rebels answered with a single run of their own in the 3rd, when Jordan Owen tripled in Jason Coker, who had led off the frame with a single.
The Rebels would be held scoreless until the top of the 11th inning, when Kevin Brown walked, advanced to second when Joe Maloney was hit in the back with a pitch from losing pitcher Stephen Styck, and came in on yet another hit from Owen- his 5th of the night. The last run, giving us the final score of 3-1, was scored when the next batter, Francisco Ramirez, singled in Maloney.
Owen is swinging a red-hot bat. He set the school record for home runs in a season at Tennessee-Martin on his last swing of his spring season, and then ripped four hits in an exhibition last night against the New Market Shockers. He finished this game 5-6, with a triple, double, and 2 RBI.
Both starters threw well. The Turk's Kurt Wunderlich finished 6 innings, allowing 6 hits, 1 run (earned), 3 walks, and striking out 9. He was snapping off a tough breaking ball that was giving the Rebels fits. For New Market, William Falasco almost matched Wunderlich pitch for pitch. Falasco allowed 2 hits, 1 run (earned), 1 walk, and struck out 6 in his 6 inning stint. Four relievers combined to shut out the Turks the rest of the way, with Cameron Ward receiving the win, and Tony Hearrell earning the save.
Coming tomorrow: a picture or two from the game, and the player and the pitcher of the day!