By BOB REDD
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
BASTIAN, Va. —
Errors and missed opportunities spelled doom for Graham G- Tuesday evening in the Yo-Na Tournament as the G-Men committed four errors and left 10 runners stranded in a 9-3 loss to the Holston Cavaliers.
Holston got on the board in the top of the second, scoring three times, thanks to a double by Austin Crabtree, a fielder’s choice by Austin Almony and a single by Shane Milhorne off starter Logan Kirk.
Graham cut into the lead in the bottom of the third, reaching Conrad Thacker for two runs. Tommy Lovell reached second on a one-out throwing error by catcher Dakota Barlow and Kirk singled. Both scored later in the inning on Jacob Coffey’s line shot to center that brought the G-Men to within a run 3-2.
Kirk, after the rocky second, settled down and at one point retired seven straight batters, but with two out in the fourth he fanned Almony and the third strike was dropped by catcher Corey Monninger. The ensuing throw sailed into right field and Almony ended up on second. The wheels fell off the Graham wagon as the Cavaliers picked up a singled, two-doubles and another error by Monninger that enabled in total four runs to touch the plate.
“We had two outs and struck the guy out and we didn’t make the play at first. That came back and killed us. Simple mistakes. We were right there. It would have been a different ball game.
“Once again we had two innings where we didn’t play very well. I thought our pitchers pitched really well, and their pitcher did a good job hitting his spots. We hit him a little bit. We had our chances but we didn’t capitalize.”
Allan Simpson pitched the fifth and sixth for Graham and kept the Cavaliers off the board, allowing one hit and striking out two.
McKinley Webb worked the seventh for the G-Men and allowed two runs.
The G-Men pushed across a single run in the bottom of the seventh when Jay Boone walked, stole second, went to third on a ground out and scored on Ben Carlisle’s single to left.
Thacker pitched the complete game and picked up the victory for Holston. He allowed three runs on seven hits, walked three and struck out nine.
Kirk took the loss for Graham as he pitched four innings, allowed seen runs on five hits, walked two and fanned five.
Seven different Graham batters had hits in the game, all singles. The G-Men are now 3-3.
Devin Keith and Milhorne each had two hits for Holston who is now 10-0 on the season.
Indians lead Montcalm
In the nightcap the Rural Retreat Indians first eight batters of the game all reached base and scored in the first inning against the Montcalm Generals.
Generals’ starting pitcher Josh Clower lasted one-third of an inning, facing 10 batters before he was lifted in favor of Aaron Presley. In the 32 minute top of the first Rural Retreat sent 14 batters to the plate, collected five hits and scored nine runs.
Meanwhile, Indians’ pitcher Austin Akers had a no-hitter until the third when John Casto picked up a one-out single to right. Casto would come around and score on Presley’s triple to straight-away center that just barely stayed within the ballpark.
After the rocky first Montcalm shut down Rural Retreat. The Indians went down in order in the second thanks to Presley picking off a baserunner. Rural Retreat also went down in order in the third and in the fourth W.K. Dalton singled, moved to second on a passed ball, but was cut down attempting to steal third and down again went the Indians in order.
The game was in progress late, Tuesday night with Rural Retreat leading midway through the fourth inning 9-1.
In Yo-Na action tonight Bland County takes on Northwood at 5 p.m. with Craig County battling Twin Valley at 7:30.
Graham and Montcalm face each other in the Yo-Na on Thursday at 5 p.m. and Holston will take on Rural Retreat in the nightcap.
At Skip Dillow Memorial Field
Holston.........030 400 2 — 9 8 3
Graham.........002 000 0 — 3 7 4
Kirk, Simpson (5), Webb (7) and Monninger, Kirk (5). Thacker and Barlow.