Dusters shutout Shelbyville
Having split a doubleheader against Shelbyville the previous evening, the Marshall County Dusters (6-2-1) traveled to Bedford County on Thursday night to take on the Golden Eagles in another twin bill and posted an 8-0 victory in the opening game.
Marshall County held a 2-0 lead through the first five innings of play before crossing home plate six times over the final two frames to pull away for the eight-run victory.
Bolstered by their late offensive surge, the Dusters finished with nine hits and a walk against three Shelbyville pitchers to go along with a hit batsman and three Golden Eagle errors.
Catcher Brandon Bush and starting pitcher Matt Sharp did the most damage at the plate for Marshall County, as Bush went 3-for-4 with a triple, 4 RBI, and a run scored, while Sharp tallied three singles and scored twice. Aaron Thomason added two hits and a RBI as well, and Aaron Hobbs had one hit and a run scored.
Sharp also turned in a strong performance on the mound and tossed a three-hit shutout to earn the victory, while piling up nine strikeouts and issuing only two walks.
Defensively, Marshall County aided Sharp's cause by turning two double plays, which helped snuff out a pair of Shelbyville scoring threats.
"We swung the bats well and got good pitching. If you play good defense too, you always have a chance to win," said Dusters coach Mike Reese. "We also bunted the ball well and were able to play some small ball. We're growing as a team and starting to do some of the little things better."
Marshall County left two runners on base in the top of the first inning before Sharp worked around two singles in the bottom half of the frame with the help of a 6-4-3 double play.
The Dusters then took a 1-0 lead in the top of the third when Grayson Wiles scored on a sacrifice fly by Jesse Kilpatrick after drawing a one-out walk and advancing to third on a single by Sharp.
In the fourth inning, Marshall County tallied a run without the benefit of a hit to open up a 2-0 advantage. Bush struck out to start the inning, but reached first base thanks to a passed ball. After advancing to second on a J.B. Reese sacrifice bunt, Bush stole third prior to scoring on a wild pitch.
Shelbyville stranded two men in scoring position in the bottom of the fifth before the Dusters pushed their lead to 5-0 in the top of the sixth behind a couple of infield singles from Sharp and Thomason, a Bush two-run triple, and a passed ball.
Marshall County then crossed home plate three more times in the seventh inning thanks to two Golden Eagle errors, a RBI single by Thomason, and a Bush two-run single to cap their 8-0 victory.