CARMICHAELS — A four-run second inning proved to be the difference for Blue Mountain on Tuesday, as it defeated Dunbar 6-2 in Fayette County Baseball League action.
The Copperheads (6-2) got an outstanding pitching performance from Tyler Schrader who went five innings and was mowing down Dunbar (0-6) batters before he got into a jam in the sixth.
“Tyler pitched another superb game for us,” Blue Mountain coach Richard Krause said. “He has done a great job for us all year long and he gave me another solid five innings. We rested him a little bit longer between starts and that helped him out a lot. He is a young guy and is really important for us.”
The Copperheads struck first when Chuck Gasti lifted an RBI single to center field that scored Joe Havrilak in the first inning.
Blue Mountain tallied four runs on five hits and an error in the second inning. Brian Coleman and George Taylor started the second with singles and stole a base to get into scoring position. Havrilak poked an infield single that scored Coleman, and Taylor scored while the infielder was trying to make a play on the ball.
Jeff Thompson collected a single that scored Havrilak to make the score 4-0. The Copperheads got one more run in the inning on an infield error.
“We were aggressive on the base paths and that helped us get four runs in that second inning,” Krause said. “We got some guys back and we are a lot faster now. We are miles away from where we want to be offensively. We are not hitting balls with authority and are getting under a lot of balls. We’ve got to get squared on the baseball.”
After the big inning for the Copperheads, Dunbar starter Brandon Noonan settled down and limited the home team to two hits after the second inning.
One of those hits, however, was an inside-the-park home run by Eric Holt in the fifth. Holt clobbered a ball down the left field line and over the outfielder’s head and hustled his way home for Blue Mountain’s final run.
Dunbar’s offense finally awoke in the sixth when it chased Schrader with singles by Tyler Domer and Noonan and a walk to Kyle Martin to load the bases.
Taylor came in to relieve Schrader. The first batter he faced lofted a sacrifice fly to right field. On the play, a Dunbar runner was caught in a rundown between first and second for the second out, but Martin alertly scored on the play. Taylor then struck out a batter to get out of the inning.
The Copperheads turned four double plays and committed no errors.
“We have to hit and stay away from those double-play balls,” Dunbar coach Jeff McWilliams said. “When you have that many runners in scoring position, you have to find a way for them to score. Brandon kept the ball down and kept them off-balance, but he just had that one bad inning against a good hitting team.”