The Charlottesville Tom Sox defeated the Strasburg Express 11-8 on Tuesday night (8/6) to move one win away from their second Jim Lineweaver Cup in three seasons.
The first few innings of the 2017 championship rematch were quiet, as the teams traded two scoreless frames. Strasburg threated with the bases loaded in the bottom of the first, but ‘Sox starter Maddison Furman (VCU) induced a groundout to end the threat.
The Charlottesville offense struck first in the third inning, when Brock Edge knocked a ball over the left field fence for a solo home run. The home run was Edge’s second in the last two days.
Another Charlottesville run came on the board in the fourth inning. A pair of singles from Trey McDyre (Liberty) and Dan Harwood (Wooster) put two on with one out, then McDyre was able to score off a wild pitch from Express starter Mason Kenney.
Strasburg fired back in the bottom of the fourth with three runs to take the lead. Slugger Sonny Dicharia started the inning with a solo home run, then Austin Garofalo hit a two-run shot three batters later to make the score 3-2. Furman was able to force a fielder’s choice followed by a lineout to derail the train without further damage.
The Express added four more runs in the fifth inning. After two walks to start the inning from Furman, Strasburg hit an RBI double followed by a three-run home run off of reliever Kyle Kingsbury to make the score 7-2.
Charlottesville fired back in the 6th with four runs of their own. Dan Harwood started things off by reaching on an error, then Parker Nolan (Davidson) reached on a fielder’s choice and Alex Fedje-Johnson (Davidson) walked to load the bases with two outs. Ramon Garza then made it to first on the second of Express shortstop Austin Garafolo’s three errors, which allowed two runs to score. The next batter, Brock Edge (Florida), hit an RBI single to score Fedje-Johnson, then Cal Greenfield (Florida) hit another RBI single, scoring Garza and making the score 7-6.
After the Express added one in the seventh off an RBI sac fly, the eighth inning ‘Sox came to life. Fedje-Johnson started things off with his second walk of the night, then Ramon Garza singled and Brock Edge hit a fielder’s choice to load the bases with no outs. Cal Greenfield hit an RBI sac fly to bring in Fedje-Johnson, but the ‘Sox weren’t done yet. Strasburg’s Nathan Boyle hit Paul Giacomazzi with a pitch to re-load the bases, then Thomas Francisco (East Carolina) advanced to first on another error by the Strasburg shortstop, bringing home two. To cap things off, Dan Harwood hit a long double to right center to bring home Francisco and McDyre.
After a blemish in the fifth, Charlottesville reliever Kyle Kingsbury (Lebanon Valley) shut things down for the ‘Sox. Kingsbury tossed 4.2 total innings, three of them being scoreless, to secure the win.
The Tom Sox are back in action on Wednesday (8/7) and have a chance to win their second VBL Championship in three years with a win over the Express. First pitch is set for 7 p.m.