By BOB REDD
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
The Glenville State Pioneers had big first innings in both games and claimed a doubleheader sweep from the Bluefield State College Big Blues, 12-5, and 9-3, Saturday evening at the June O. Shott Field at the Higginbotham Sports Complex on the BSC campus.
“You can’t give up four runs and five runs, it’s just hard to bounce back from that,” said BSC coach Geoff Hunter. “We have no excuses. They (Glenville State) are a much-improved team and they were ready to play today and for whatever reason, I’m not sure why, we weren’t ready.
“I am proud of the kids for working as hard as they did to get the field ready, to help me do that, but we just weren’t there early in the ballgame and when you get down it’s tough to come back.”
The start of the twinbill was pushed back three hours as the BSC players and staff worked on the field so the games could be played.
In game one the Pioneers plated four runs in the first en route to a 12-5 win. Three Glenville hits and two BSC errors accounted for the scoring off starting pitcher J.C. Pennington.
The Big Blues cut the Pioneers’ lead in half in the second. A leadoff walk by Alex Dunn and a single by Clay Ayers put two on with no outs. Dylan Raymond’s tapper to the mound moved both runners up 90 feet and both trotted home on Kyle Blocker’s single to center to make it 4-2.
Glenville then went on a scoring rampage, scoring two in the third, three in the fourth, one in the fifth and two in the sixth.
Pennington gave way to Ridge Sibold with one down in the fifth.
In the Bluefield fifth Rusty Rainey opened with a single and Sean Williams’ one-out single put runners on first and second. A wild pitch moved each baserunner ahead before Rainey raced home on Dale Davis’ ground out to short.
The Big Blues, down 12-3 in the bottom of the seventh, donned the rally caps and managed to get across two runs, but it proved too little, too late. Pinch hitter Cody Underwood singled to left and raced to third on Williams’ double to the right-center gap. Both Underwood and Williams scored on Davis’ single.
Pennington suffered the loss for the Big Blues, working four-and-a-third innings. He allowed 10 runs on 10 hits, seven of the runs earned. Sibold worked the final two-and-a-third for BSC and gave up two runs on four hits. Each State pitcher struck out a batter.
Sean Garza picked up the win for Glenville State as he tossed a complete game, allowing five runs on 11 hits. He did not strike out a batter and walked one.
Garza aided his cause by going 3-for-5 at the plate with a double. Tyler Wiseman, Kenneth Finzel, Heath Swisher and Josh Orsborn each had a pair of hits for the Pioneers.
In game two Glenville State scored five times in the first to take a 9-3 win.
Jacob Muncy took to the hill for the Big Blues and three walks, two hits and a BSC error in the opening frame had Bluefield State playing catch-up from the onset. Muncy did settle down and worked into the fourth inning with the bases loaded and no outs. The Pioneers scored two runs in the fourth.
After Glenville scored a single run in the sixth, the Bluefield State bats came to life. Davis legged out an infield single, stole second and third and scampered home on a throwing error. Dylan Raymond then followed with a towering home run to right-center for the Big Blues’ second run of the game. Pinch-hitter Jackson Mohler was hit by a pitch and scored from first on Tyler Frazier’s double to center. At that time Glenville starter Finzel was lifted and Danny McCormick came in and extinguished the BSC threat.
Muncy was tagged with the loss. He pitched three innings of three hit ball, allowed eight runs, of which six were earned and struck out one. Taylor Perez pitched the final four frames. He gave up one run on two hits and fanned three.
Hunter praised his relief pitchers.
“I thought Perez did a good job in relief and I thought Sibold did a good job in relief in the first game, but by then it was too late in both of them.”
Ethan Saab and Alex Mace had a pair of hits apiece for Glenville State, while Davis had two hits for the Big Blues (4-20).
Finzel got the win for Glenville.
Both teams tallied six hits in the nightcap.
“The good thing about baseball is you can bounce back tomorrow,” Hunter said. “We’re a better team than what we’ve been showing.”
The two teams meet for a single game this afternoon at 1 p.m. in the series finale.
— Contact Bob Redd at