Sox force Game 3 vs. Braves

By Libby Davidson – @libbydavidson4

TOM SOX DEFEAT BRAVES 9-7 IN TEN INNINGS, FORCE WINNER-TAKE-ALL GAME THREE

STAUNTON, Va. – In a 10-inning, back-and-forth affair, The Charlottesville Tom Sox secured a pennant-deciding game three against the Staunton Braves with a 9-7 win on Sunday night (8/4).

The Charlottesville offense came out swinging in the first inning off Braves starter Reid Celata, scoring three runs on five hits. Cayman Richardson (Virginia) and Thomas Francisco (East Carolina) each hit singles to lead off the game, then Trey McDyre (Liberty) and Dan Harwood (Wooster) followed with RBI singles to bring the runners home. Alex Fedje-Johnson (Davidson) finished off the inning with an RBI double to score McDyre and bring the score to 3-0.

Jaspar Carmichael (Johns Hopkins) started strong on the mound for the ‘Sox, tossing a scoreless inning in the bottom of the first. Staunton was determined to bounce back, however, and tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the second with a three-run home run off the bat of Jaily Paredes.

Both teams went scoreless in the third and fourth innings; however, the Braves were set up to send runners home with the bases loaded in the bottom of the fourth but were shut down via a great play from Francisco at first base.

Charlottesville was able to put one more on the board in the top of the fifth. Thomas Francisco walked, then Trey McDyre hit his first of two doubles on the night to advance Francisco to third. Christian Hlinka (Virginia) then came up to the plate and hit an RBI groundout to score Francisco, giving the ‘Sox a 4-3 advantage.

The Braves had a breakthrough sixth inning after former Tom Sox catcher Jacob Selden hit a three-run home run off of Tom Sox reliever Matthew Dillard (Johns Hopkins), giving the Braves a 6-4 lead. The Tom Sox answered in the top of the seventh with a half-inning full of walks and errors to regain the lead. Harwood initiated the pattern by walking to score Francisco, who got on base courtesy of one of his three walks on the night. Fedje-Johnson then walked to score McDyre, bringing Paul Giacomazzi (Rhodes) to the plate. Giacomazzi hit into a fielder’s choice which was able to bring in Harwood, who scored on an error by the catcher, to make the score 7-6.

Georgia Tech hurler Sam Crawford came in for the next four innings and shut the Braves down in three of the four frames. In the seventh inning, Jaily Paredes hit his second home run of the night to tie the score at seven apiece, but Crawford tossed three shutout innings to follow, including a pair of three-up, three-down frames to close out the night. Crawford added five strikeouts to his winning performance on the night.

The Tom Sox came into the tenth inning with something to prove. Trey McDyre hit an RBI double to score Francisco, who got on base an incredible six times on the night, and gave Charlottesville a still-tight 8-7 lead. Alex Fedje-Johnson then walked and scored McDyre to grow the lead to 9-7. The bases were filled with ‘Sox with one down, but the Braves were able to get out of the jam – still not without surrendering the go-ahead and eventual winning runs.

The Tom Sox are back in action on Monday night (8/5) at C-VILLE Weekly Ballpark at 7pm and will attempt to clinch the Valley League South Division Pennant for the third consecutive season.