Mt. Vernon nips Mineola
Given the last couple of years of athletic experience, there are few competitions in any sport more keen than a Mineola/Mt. Vernon match-up. It gives everything just an extra bit of …
Mt. Vernon nips Mineola
Given the last couple of years of athletic experience, there are few competitions in any sport more keen than a Mineola/Mt. Vernon match-up. It gives everything just an extra bit of electricity.
Last Friday, the sharp edge of the rivalry was very apparent when the Yellowjackets hosted the Tigers on the diamond. Mt. Vernon came away with a 7-5 win, based largely on a big, four-run first inning. The game, however, was chock full of excellent competition, with players putting forth that little bit extra that rivalries draw.
The visitors came to the plate with quick bats. They banged out four base hits in the first inning to build that lead. While four runs would not have taken the game, the offensive production of the Tigers early in the game created a perception that Mineola was chasing the game all night.
After a scoreless second, Mt. Vernon pushed a man home with a sacrifice fly in the top of the third to go up 5-0.
Mineola capitalized on three free passes and an infield error to record two runs in the bottom of the third. The key play in the rally was provided by Kaden Bell, who beat a ground ball which was fielded behind second base. His two-out infield hit was critical to getting on the scorecard.
Bell set the Tigers down in order in the fourth, and one could sense the momentum shifting toward the home side.
In the bottom half, Brady Shrum had an excellent at bat and earned a base on balls. With an amazing jump on the pitch and a great slide, Shrum cleanly stole second. The Tigers knew he was going and made a spot-on throw to gun him down at second; he just beat the throw.
Cason Davis drove Shrum home with a deep liner into the left-center gap. After four innings, the score stood 5-3, Mt. Vernon.
Mineola added a run in the fifth to close the gap, but Mt. Vernon answered with two runs in the top of the sixth. Three base hits, including an extra-base hit, gave the Tigers the winning run.
The Jackets loaded the bases in the fifth and again in the seventh but could generate only one run each inning. Mt. Vernon prevailed 7-5.
Mineola had ample opportunity to bring runners home, but on this night, it was the visitors who made the balance of the critical base hits. While there were certainly missed chances to knock-off the Tigers, the Jackets played an excellent game.
Of particular note was the work of Spencer Joyner at shortstop, the fortitude of Kaden Bell on the mound and the offensive production of Bell, Shrum, and Braydon Alley.
The Jackets were at Mt. Pleasant Chapel Hill Tuesday and host Winnsboro Friday with the first pitch scheduled for 7 p.m.