Friday, October 12, 2007

Gray Comes From Behind to Win and Force Game 5

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Team Gray came from a run down in the bottom of the seventh inning to score two runs and win Game 4 of the Scarlet and Gray World Series, 5-4, Thursday at Bill Davis Stadium. The deciding Game 5 will be played at 3 p.m. Friday and admission is free.

It was a game that started off slow with a slight rain in the air and Gray pitcher Theron Minium in control. Behind an early three-run lead, Minium cruised through his six innings of work, allowing just four hits and one earned run with no walks and one strikeout.

He was replaced in the seventh by Rory Meister and Team Scarlet took advantage by scoring three runs off three hits and one error to take a 4-3 lead. All the scoring occurred with two outs and all of the runs were unearned. Tony Kennedy reached on an error and back-to-back walks loaded the bases. Cory Ruppert lined a single to score two runs and Ryan Dew followed with an RBI single to give the Scarlet its first lead of the game.

But back came the Gray, which was down two games to none at one point in the series but has fought back to force Game 5. The first three batters – Nathan Grove, Cory Kovanda and J.B. Shuck – all coaxed walks off Scarlet reliever Brad Hays. Brad Brookbank signaled to left scoring Grove but Kovanda was out at the plate on a fine throw by Michael Arp. Shuck alertly went to third on the throw home, and he scored the winning run when Zach Hurley hit a sacrifice fly to centerfield.

“The Gray did a nice job coming back to win this game,” coach Bob Todd said. “Theron Minium pitched a real nice game and they led the whole game. They showed some character coming back to win and force a Game 5 after losing that lead in the seventh inning.”

The Gray opened the scoring with two runs in the bottom of the first inning. Kovanda led off with a walk, advanced to second on a groundout and scored on a single to right by Zach Hurley. Gray coach Pete Jenkins then called for a hit-and-run and the execution was perfect as Tyler Engle drilled a double down the left field line and Hurley rounded the bases to score from first.

Team Gray increased the lead to 3-0 in the third with an unearned run. Brookbank reached on an error on the pitcher, moved to third on back-to-back walks and scored on a single to right by Brian DeLucia. Scarlet right fielder Ryan Dew threw out Hurley, who was trying to score on the play from second.

Meanwhile, Minium was easing his way through the first five innings with shutout baseball. He finally surrendered a run in the sixth to the Scarlet, allowing singles by Rupert and Dew with a run scoring on a double play ball, but that did little to dampen his effort on a moist and soggy day at Bill Davis Stadium.

Meister picked up the win while Hays took the loss. Offensively, Ruppert and Dew combined for four hits and three RBI to lead the Scarlet. Ben Toussant also had a pair of hits. No one on the Gray team had more than one hit, but the top four players in the order all scored runs. Hurley had two RBI.

Scarlet and Gray World Series Notes:

  • Cory Kovanda is leading all hitters with a .583 average (7-12) and with five runs scored for the Gray.
  • The Gray’s Zach Hurley has four RBI and is second to Kovanda with a .417 average (5-12)
  • Gray pitchers have a 4.08 earned run average and have allowed 13 earned runs and 11 walks in 28.2 innings with 11 strikeouts.
  • Matt Streng and Ryan Dew are leading the Scarlet offensively with .455 and .429 averages, respectively. Streng is 5-for-11 at the plate and Dew is 6-for-14.
  • Dew, Cory Ruppert and Ben Toussant have three RBI apiece.
  • The pitching staff has a 4.40 ERA with 23 walks and 18 strikeouts in 28.2 innings of work.
  • Admission is free to Game 5 of the Scarlet and Gray World Series at 3 p.m. Friday at Bill Davis Stadium.

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