The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Sports

June 15, 2013

Joplin Miners win first two games in tournament

PRYOR, Okla. — The Joplin Miners American Legion baseball team improved to 2-0 in Pool B of the Pryor Tournament by beating Tahlequah 6-2 on Friday.

The Miners, 7-1 overall, opened in the tourney on Thursday with an 8-0 win in five innings against Claremore.

Said Joplin coach Drew Schulte: “We’ve been playing well. We’ve had timely hits. We’re pitching well and we’re playing solid defense.”

Joplin plays Salina (Okla.) at 3 p.m. today to finish pool play and a win places the Miners in the title contest at 8.

The Miners caught Tahlequah at 2 with a run in the top of the sixth inning and struck for four runs in the seventh.

Doubles by Rex Whisner and Nate Brummer snapped the deadlock. Gavin Jones’ triple made it 4-2. Brett Graham singled in Jones. Tristan Ash and Colton Johnson followed with singles to plate Graham.

Ash picked up the win against Tahlequah by working the final 12⁄3 innings in relief of fellow right-hander Tyler Fancher. Ash allowed one hit and struck out two. Fancher allowed just two hits, struck out eight and walked two.

Graham was the only Joplin player with two hits against Tahlequah. Ash is the probable starter the Miners against Salina, Schulte said.

Joplin tallied four runs in both the first and fifth innings against Claremore.

Ash rapped a two-run home run in the first inning to back right-hander Caleb Garton (two hits, 10 strikeouts, 1 walk).

Jones and Tyson Hardee each had two hits for the Miners. Hardee and Whisner drove in two rune apiece.

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