Bulldogs tame Mustangs
Coming off a 15-11 road loss to Loretto the previous day that saw them squander a nine-run lead, the Cornersville Bulldogs (7-2) showed no ill effects from that setback, as they defeated the Mustangs 3-1 at home on Friday night behind yet another strong pitching performance from senior hurler Mikey Adams.
Having thrown three complete games already this season, Adams once again went the distance on the mound and racked up 15 strikeouts in seven innings of work while limiting Loretto to just one run on seven hits and three walks to improve his record to 3-1 on the year.
"Mikey was good once again," said CHS coach Ben Putman. "He gave up his first earned run of the year, but bounced back and battled through adversity several times today. That's what you want from your ace."
"I've just been keeping batters off balance by mixing my fastball, curveball, and slider," said Adams. "I've been able to get ahead of hitters and that's been the key because then they have to chase my pitch."
The Bulldogs finished with seven hits as well against two Loretto pitchers to go along with a walk and three Mustang errors.
Cornersville catcher Cody Blackburn had a big day both at and behind the plate, as he went 3-for-3 with a double and 2 RBI, while also throwing out a pair of Loretto base runners on steal attempts. Tyler Lowery added a pair of singles and a run scored as well, and Adams and Matt Callender (1 RBI) each had one hit.
Mustang starting pitcher Brandon Gillespie suffered the loss, allowing three runs on seven hits over five plus innings.
Jordan Gowen, Alex Metcalf, and Dakota Grey tallied two hits apiece to pace Loretto offensively with Grey belting a solo homerun.
Cornersville got off to a fast start and pushed across two runs in the bottom of the first inning to grab a 2-0 lead. After singling with one out, Lowery moved to third on an Adams single while Adams advanced to second on the play when the Mustangs tried to throw out Lowery. Blackburn then plated both runners by roping a double into the left centerfield gap.
The Mustangs trimmed the deficit to 2-1 in the top of the second when Grey blasted a solo shot over the centerfield fence to lead off the inning.
Loretto then stranded a pair of runners in scoring position in the third before Blackburn helped snuff out another potential Mustang threat in the fourth by gunning down Grey at second on a steal attempt after he led off the frame with a single.
In the bottom of the fourth, CHS gave Adams a little more wiggle room by tallying one run in the frame to push their lead to 3-1. Following a leadoff single by Blackburn, courtesy runner Jody Sullivan stole second prior to scoring on a Callender RBI single.
After leaving runners at first and second in the top of the fifth, Loretto loaded the bases with two outs in the seventh when Briley Glass and Gowen sandwiched singles around an Austin Stooksberry walk.
Adams, however, bore down and escaped the jam by striking out Metcalf to clinch the Bulldogs' 3-1 win.