Mercy rule ends Montrose, BR rematch

Kyle Watkins dives into first base to avoid the tag by Raider first baseman Zach Collins. PHOTO BY HEIDI ZENEFSKI

Kyle Watkins dives into first base to avoid the tag by Raider first baseman Zach Collins. PHOTO BY HEIDI ZENEFSKI

BY HEIDI ZENEFSKI
Sports Correspondent

The first time the Montrose and Blue Ridge baseball teams met they battled into 10 innings, with the Meteors edging out the Raiders for the win.
The anticipated rematch ended in the fifth inning, with Montrose claiming the 14-0 mercy rule, home field win.

Blue Ridge batters faced Matt Benninger, who gave up a single to Curtis Mills, and threw two strike outs with the batters looking.

Jacob Decker returned to the mound for Blue Ridge, with Meteors Matt Simonds singling, followed by Benninger who drove in Simonds for the score.

Montrose went on a hitting streak in the second inning. Will Farrell, Nick Henry, Kyle Watkins, Matt Lewis, and Simonds singled; Andreas Mittman and Benninger doubled.

Lewis was tagged out by the Raiders attempting to steal second; as was, Mike Vanness by Blue Ridge second baseman Kalieb Sheideler in the inning-ending play.

Going into the third, Montrose was up 7-0.

Blue Ridge’s Decker singled in the third but was caught stealing second by Henry, ending the Raiders turn at bat.

Mittman hit a big triple and scored on a sacrifice by Henry. Watkins doubled bringing Ethan Stankiewicz across the plate.

Both teams made pitching changes in the fourth, with Vanness taking the mound for Montrose and Scheideler throwing for Blue Ridge.

Both teams made pitching changes in the fourth inning. Vanness took over for Montrose, and Scheideler for Blue Ridge.

Matt Laubach led off for Blue Ridge with a hit, advanced with a steal and went on to third on a wild pitch. But none of the Raiders line up could move Laubach across the plate.

Facing Scheideler, Benninger. R.J. Arnold singled and Stankiewicz tripled with bases loaded.

Going into the top of the fifth inning, the Raiders knew they had to score or the game would be over. Scheideler did his part as the leadoff batter and hit a double.

But Vanness was able to retire the next three batters in a row, ending the game with the mercy rule. Montrose claimed the shut out 14-0 victory.

Decker pitched three innings, gave up 11 hits, 9 runs; 8 earned, 2 walks and had 3 strike outs Scheideler pitched 1 inning, gave up 5 hits, 5 earned runs, 2 walks and 2 strike outs.

Benninger pitched 3 innings, gave up 2 hits, no runs, no walks, and had 5 strike outs with four looking. Vanness pitched 2 innings, gave up 2 hits, no runs, no walks, and had 5 strike outs.