After being cancelled two times because of rain, the sectional semi-final baseball game between the Peebles Indians and the New Boston Tigers finally came to fruition on Tuesday afternoon and it turned out to be a banner day for the boys in the Peebles red and white. Behind a 13-hit offensive attack and the pitching of Brady Johnson, the Indians were victorious in their 2014 tournament opener, downing the host New Boston Tigers by a final score of 8-2.
The Indians used a three-run second inning to take a lead they never relinquished and rode the right arm of Johnson, who struck out 10 in a complete game win, the fourth of the year for Peebles.
“We had a very good offensive day and we were pretty solid defensively,” said Peebles head coach Judd Johnson. “Brady was again outstanding on the mound going the distance for us.”
After a scoreless first inning on both sides, the Indians broke the ice with the three-spot in the top of the second. Tyler Fenner led off with a single to left, followed by a base hit to center by John Penn. Fenner rode home on a base hit to right by Lane Hanson and a single to center by Clay Brown brought Penn home. Back after missing the regular season with a wrist injury, Brennan Simms singled to left to drive home Hanson and give Peebles the early 3-0 lead.
The Indians added to that margin in the top of the third when Johnson led off with a double to left and went to third on Fenner’s second hit in as many innings. A ground out to second off the bat of Penn brought Johnson across and Hanson’s second base hit of the game resulted in his second RBI and a 5-0 Peebles advantage.
New Boston finally got to Johnson for a run in the bottom of the fourth on a pair of two-base hits, but the Peebles starter bore down and left two runners stranded with no further damage.
In the top of the fifth, the Indians dented the scoreboard once more when Johnson walked followed by singles by Fenner and Penn that loaded the bases. After a Hanson strikeout, Johnson tagged and scored on a Joe McElwee sacrifice fly to left, pushing the Peebles advantage to 6-1.
New Boston picked up an unearned run in their half of the sixth, but the Indian offense answered with two more in the top of the seventh. With one out, Penn singled to center, his third hit of the night, Hanson reached on an error and both runners moved up on a wild pitch. A base hit to right by McElwee scored Penn and when McElwee tried to stretch his hit into a double and was gunned down at second, Hanson raced home on the throw to make it 8-2.
Back to the mound to finish off a complete game performance, Johnson held the Tigers scoreless in the bottom of the seventh and the No. 9 seeded Indians were on their way to the sectional championship game.
The Indians got a huge offensive output from their 4-8 hitters as Fenner, Penn, Hanson, McElwee, and Clay Brown combined for 11 hits and six runs batted in. Johnson got his fourth win of the season against two losses, hitting double digits in strikeouts with 10 and scattering seven hits, while walking just two New Boston hitters.
“It was just a good all-around game for us with everybody contributing,” said Coach Johnson. “It was just nice to get a win in the sectional tournament.”
After the cancellations, the Indians were forced into the unfortunate situation of having to play tournament games on back to back days as their sectional title game was scheduled to be played at No. 1 seeded Leesburg Fairfield on Wednesday, though looming weather conditions may have changed that. The results of that contest were not known at press time but will be reported in a future issue of The People’s Defender.
Mark Carpenter can be reached at 937-544-2391 or on Twitter @adamcosports.
032 01 2 —8
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Peebles Hitting (AB-R-H-RBI): Seaman 3-0-0-0, R. Brown 4-0-0-0, Johnson 3-2-1-0, Fenner 4-2-3-0, Penn 4-2-3-1, Hanson 4-2-2-2, McElwee 3-0-1-2, C. Brown 4-0-2-1, Simms 2-0-1-1, Team 33-8-13-7.
Peebles Pitching: Johnson (W, 4-2) 7 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 10K