Columbia cruises past Dusters for first victory

Friday, July 11, 2014
Columbia's Jonathan Davis slides underneath Marshall County second baseman Lane Whitesell while stealing second base in the top of the third inning. Tribune photos by Louis G. Scheuchenzuber

After losing the first three meetings against the Marshall County Dusters (19-9) this summer, the Columbia Cubs reversed that trend on Wednesday afternoon when they claimed a 6-2 victory in the first game of a doubleheader at Joe George Field.

Columbia took control of the game early and built a 6-0 lead through the first four innings of play before coasting to the four-run victory.

Strong pitching

Marshall County pitcher Josh McKnight beats Columbia's Jonathan Davis to first base for an out after receiving a throw from first baseman Cameron Isley in the top of the fourth inning.

Cub starting pitcher Jonathan Davis turned in a strong performance on the mound and picked up the win after yielding just one run in six innings of work on two hits and four walks while recording eight strikeouts. Chris Short then came on in relief of Davis and allowed one run in one inning on two hits.

Columbia mustered only four hits in the contest as well, but showed good patience at the plate and drew nine walks against three Marshall County hurlers to go along with two hit batsmen. The Cubs also took advantage of their team speed and stole five bases overall while not being thrown out once.

Davis (2 RBI), Kade Bowden (2 RBI), Short (2 RBI), and Jonathan Harris each tallied one hit for the Cubs.

Duster starting pitcher Madison Peete suffered the loss and gave up five runs over two and a third innings on two hits and three walks. Cameron Isley (1 RBI), Josh McKnight (1 RBI), Peete, and Bubba Houghton each notched one hit for Marshall County.

Cubs strike first

Columbia got off to a fast start and pushed across two runs in the top of the first inning to grab a 2-0 lead. After Spencer Holt was hit by a pitch, Harris drew a walk before both runners moved up 90 feet on a sacrifice bunt by Davis. Bowden then drove in Holt and Harris by smacking a two-run single into centerfield.

Peete held the Cubs scoreless in the second inning, but Columbia crossed home plate three more times in the top of the third on the strength of two walks, a RBI single by Davis, four stolen bases, and a Short two-run single to open up a 5-0 advantage.

The Cubs then tacked on another run in the fourth inning to stretch their lead to 6-0. Following consecutive walks by Jensen Petteway and Holt, Harris singled to load the bases with one out before Petteway came home on a RBI groundout by Davis.

Dusters score

Marshall County finally showed signs of life offensively in the bottom of the sixth and scratched out one run in the frame to trim the deficit to 6-1. Peete led off the inning with a single to break up Davis' no-hit bid before Bush hit into a fielder's choice and advanced to second on a throwing error. Isley then plated Bush by lacing a RBI single into centerfield.

In the bottom of the seventh, the Dusters tallied another run with the help of an infield single by Houghton, an error, and a McKnight RBI single for the 6-2 final.