ENTERPRISE – There was nothing amazing about what West Union did Thursday night – display good pitching and good hitting, and the outcome is usually in your favor.
The host Eagles combined those two simple phases of baseball for a 7-1 victory over Ingomar in Game 1 of their Class 1A semifinal playoff series.
Game 2 of the best-of-three matchup is at 6:30 p.m. today at Ingomar.
This was the first meeting of the season for the Union County foes, and Devin Brock handled all the pressure associated with the situation pretty well. The left-hander only allowed two hits while striking out 12 against normally hard-hitting Ingomar (23-5).
“Devin Brock pitched very well,” West Union coach Ashley Russell said. “He kept the ball around the strike zone and kept their hitters off balance.”
The only blip on Brock’s radar was in the seventh inning, when he walked in the Falcons’ only run. Ingomar had also loaded the bases with two outs in the sixth inning, but Brock ended that threat with a strikeout.
“Brock did a good job against us,” Ingomar coach Andy Wilbanks said. “He mixed his pitches well.”
While Brock handled the pitching, he got all the offensive support he would need in the first inning. There, West Union (17-11) scored four times, including a solid three-run home run by Taylor English to left-center.
“The home run was big, but I was very proud of the way we scratched out those runs at the end of the game,” Russell said. “This gave us confidence we could play with them, but we haven’t won anything yet.”
West Union did pad its lead in the later innings with a solo run in the fifth, and a pair of runs in the sixth that included an RBI hit by Hunter McQuary, who had three hits in the contest.
Undecided on starters
Russell said he was undecided on who he will chose as his Game 2 starter. Having to juggle his rotation for this contest because of its rain-delayed previous series, Wilbanks indicates he will be able to pick between his top two starters for Game 2 – Josh Hodges and Preston Broom.
“We definitely play with a lot of confidence when we have our No. 1 and 2 guys out there,” Wilbanks said. “But we still have to come out and compete, no matter who’s on the mound.
David Wheeler/NEMS Daily Journal