COLLEGEDALE — Walker Valley starting pitcher Dylan Allender breezed through the East Hamilton lineup for three innings before the Hurricanes zeroed in and erased a 1-0 Mustang lead with a three-run …
COLLEGEDALE — Walker Valley starting pitcher Dylan Allender breezed through the East Hamilton lineup for three innings before the Hurricanes zeroed in and erased a 1-0 Mustang lead with a three-run fourth inning on their way to a 5-1 opening day win.
Playing on a still-soggy field after a 24-hour rain delay, the Mustangs adjusted well to the damp playing surface capped with taller-than-usual sod. Continuous rains have rendered proper field maintenance virtually impossible, but the Mustangs adjusted well, for the most part.
Allender took the loss for the Mustangs (0-1, 0-1 District 5-AAA), working 5 1/3 innings before handing the stitches over to John Klepzig with one out in the bottom of the sixth. The 'Canes touched Klepzig for two runs off three extra base hits. The Walker Valley right-hander showed quickness on the hill in picking off an East Hamilton (1-0, 1-0) base runner to end the sixth.
Allender gave up only three hits, but left with the Mustangs trailing 3-1. The Walker Valley right-hander drove in the Mustangs' only run with a double to deep right-center field in the top of the second that scored Parker Caldwell, who earlier reached on a shot down the third-base line. The scorcher stayed just fair and looked to be an easy double, but the ball rolled to a quick stop in the tall outfield grass.
Parker picked up two of the Mustangs' three hits.
East Hamilton's Isaac Moulds got the win, giving up only three hits and one run to the Mustangs.
"Their pitcher came back and did a good job after we got a couple of hits on him. That's the mark of a pretty good pitcher," said Mustangs coach Joe Shamblin. "It was a pretty well played game, we just didn't hit it. We've got to hit it a little better."
The Hurricanes rallied for three runs in the fourth scoring on three singles. A pair of wild pitches tied the score at 1-1. A Mustang's error combined with two singles put the Hurricanes on top 3-1.
"We only had one error, but it cost us a couple of runs. We should have been out of the inning with it being 1-1," said Shamblin.
East Hamilton added single runs in the fifth and sixth innings to close out the win.
The Mustangs will have a chance to even the score today when the Hurricanes come to Walker Valley for the second game of the two-game series.
"I was pleased with the way we played in the field, overall," Shamblin said. "We've just got to turn it around at the plate tomorrow."
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