Eagles earn split with Marshall County

Friday, June 8, 2012
Marshall County pitcher Aaron Hobbs throws out a Shelbyville baserunner at first after fielding a bunt in the top of the third inning. Photo by Louis G. Scheuchenzuber

After defeating Shelbyville 7-1 in the first game of a doubleheader on Wednesday night, the Marshall County Dusters (5-2-1) had to settle for a split, as they lost 4-3 to the Golden Eagles in five innings at Joe George Field in the nightcap.

The two teams were locked in a 2-2 tie through the first three innings of play, before Shelbyville scored two runs in the top of the fourth to seize a 4-2 advantage. Marshall County then sliced the deficit to 4-3 in the bottom of the fifth, but the Golden Eagles staved off the rally attempt to snap the Dusters' four-game winning streak.

Having averaged slightly over seven runs per game in their last four outings, Marshall County saw their offense go dormant in the second game against Shelbyville and mustered just four hits in the contest.

Centerfielder Grayson Wiles led the Dusters at the plate by going 2-for-2 with a homerun, 1 RBI, and two runs scored, while Zack Kirby and Blake Darnell each had one hit.

Marshall County starting pitcher Aaron Hobbs suffered the loss, allowing four runs over three and two-thirds innings on eight hits and a walk. Jesse Kilpatrick then came on in relief of Hobbs and yielded two hits in one and one-third scoreless innings of work.

The Golden Eagles left a couple of runners in scoring position in the top of the second inning, but broke the scoreless tie in the third by pushing across two runs in the frame with the help of two hits, two Duster errors, and a sacrifice fly to grab a 2-0 lead.

"We got some good pitching, but we made a couple of errors that hurt us and didn't get enough timely hits," said Duster coach Mike Reese. "I was pleased with how the younger guys played overall though. They've been showing steady improvement and have been getting better each game."

Marshall County got on the board in the bottom of the third and tallied two runs in the frame to knot the game at 2-2. After Wiles and Darnell sandwiched two bloop singles around a walk by Kirby to load the bases with no outs, Wiles and courtesy runner Jesse Kilpatrick both raced home on wild pitches to tie the score.

The Golden Eagles, though, mounted an immediate response and plated two runs in the top of the fourth on the strength of a single and a pair of doubles to pull ahead 4-2.

In the bottom of the fifth, Wiles blasted a solo shot over the left field fence to narrow the gap to 4-3 before Kirby singled. Courtesy runner Aaron Thomason then stole second with one out, but Shelbyville retired the next two Marshall County batters on strikeouts to hold on for the one-run victory.