The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Sports

May 31, 2012

Miners, Carl Junction split American Legion doubleheader

Bryce Ash’s two-run single capped a four-run fourth inning in Joplin’s 8-6 victory against Carl Junction in the second game of an American Legion doubleheader Thursday night at Joe Becker Stadium.

Chase Marrs pitched a complete game four-hitter in Carl Junction’s 5-3 victory in the first game.

Joplin’s second-game comeback began with back-to-back singles by Blake Brown and Hank Millard in the bottom of the fourth. Johnny Presley tried to advance the runners and reached base with a bunt single.

Gavin Jones hit a two-run single to center that tied the score at 6-6, then Ash, pinch hitting for Nate Brummer, drove in two runs with a single to left.

“The bottom of the lineup did a great job executing,” said Joplin head coach Bobby Stackhouse. “We were aggressive on the bases and stayed away from some force outs.”

Joplin, 5-1, plays McDonald County at 1 p.m. Saturday at Joe Becker Stadium.

Carl Junction had taken a 3-0 lead in the first inning of the second game. A leadoff single by Payton Walker, a walk to Josh Petty and a bunt single by Marrs loaded the bases, then Nathan Skaggs and Branch McGriff each drove in a run on force outs at second base. Logan Terry drove in the third run with a bases-loaded walk.

“I was pleased with the way we responded in the second game after being down 3-0,” Stackhouse said. “We were able to chip away and take the lead in our last at bat.”

Joplin scored twice in the second inning on back-to-back sacrifice bunts by Pressley and Hank Millard, and added two more runs in the third inning on Keith Simpson’s two-run double to right field.

Carl Junction scored twice and took a 5-2 lead in the top of the third inning on a single by McGriff, a double by Keegan Pittman and a three-base throwing error.

Skaggs drove in a run for Carl Junction on a fielder’s choice in the fourth inning.

In the first game, Carl Junction scored all five of its runs in the second inning. Brandon Harner’s single to left scored Jaron Hulette, who led off and was hit by a pitch.

Nathan Doyle reached on a bunt single and Petty drove in a run with a bases-loaded walk. Pittman was hit by a pitch, and Marrs and Skaggs each drove in a run with ground balls.

“It was kind of the perfect storm,” Stackhouse said. “They had a couple of bloopers fall. They had a couple of bunt singles.

“You have to give Marrs credit. He shut us down after the second inning.”

Marrs, who walked four and struck out six, gave up just two singles and a walk after the second inning.

Tyler Russell’s two-out double for the Miners in the first inning scored Brett Graham, who had singled. The Miners pulled to within 5-3 with two runs in the second inning aided by a Carl Junction error.

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