By ANTHONY STEVENS
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
HONAKER, Va. —
The Russell County Tigers again concluded their run through the Black Diamond District with an unblemished record. Honaker (16-3, 10-0) won the battle of Tigers, defeating Haysi 6-1 at Harding Field.
It probably wasn’t the type of game either coach wanted to close out the regular season with. There were several defensive miscues, base running blunders and mistakes.
“A play here or there could have been the difference,” Haysi coach Dewayne Stanley said. “It wasn’t the best game for either team. It got ugly at times, odd base running and it wasn’t well played in the field.
“We had some chances, hitting the ball hard with someone on base but it was always right at a defender.”
After a tough loss to Virginia High on Wednesday, Honaker was happy to get a win. With back-to-back games they used three different pitchers. Travis Price threw the first two innings, Jacob Coleman then threw two and Jordan Hess picked up the win throwing the final three innings.
Haysi (10-9, 7-3) banged out 10 hits, although there were several bloopers and bad hop singles. Haysi didn’t have any extra base hits. The Honaker pitching staff helped themselves greatly by not issuing a walk.
“I was pleased with the pitching today,” Honaker acting head coach Alex Zachwieja said. “But we’re still not swinging the bats like we need to. We execute perfectly in practice, hitting hard line drives but we come out during games and hit the ball up. It’s a little frustrating.”
Honaker had a couple of runs in the first inning to take an early lead. Hess walked. Payton Ball then laced a RBI double to right-center. Austin Kiser hit a deep single, off the fence to score Ball giving Honaker a 2-0 advantage.
Haysi cut the lead in half 2-1 with a run in the fourth. Drake Howell singled. Tyler Smith then reached on an error, when a potential double play ball was booted. Jalen Sykes hit a bad hop single to score Howell. Haysi couldn’t get another clutch hit, leaving eight runners stranded.
An unearned run was added by Honaker in the fifth. Hess reached on an error and eventually scored on a sacrifice fly by Kiser.
They put it away with three more runs in the sixth. Chandler Miller picked up a RBI with a sacrifice fly. Avin Parrott added a two-run single for the final margin.
“It was a good effort to win this game,” stated Zachwieja. “I’m just happy to get the win. Haysi is a big rival and they gave us a run for our money today.”
As the regular season champion Honaker receives a bye in the BDD tourney.
The tournament opens today when Haysi hosts Council and Twin Valley visits Hurley.
at Tom Harding Field
Haysi..............................000 100 0 — 1 10 5
Honaker..........................200 013 x — 6 9 1
Sutherland, Slemp (2) and Sykes. Price, Coleman (3), Hess (5) and Mitchell.
W—Hess (2-0). L—Sutherland (1-1).