After losing seven games in a row, the Raiders have bounced back and are one more sweep away from being a .500 team for the first time since March 15. Three Rivers swept Williams Baptist on Wednesday at Roger Pattillo Field, winning the opener 10-3 and the nightcap 8-3. With the wins, Three Rivers (15-17) is 7-2 in its past nine games. Four of those wins were from a season sweep of Williams Baptist. Three Rivers also swept Crowley's Ridge JV and picked up a win against Crowder. "We had some good situational hitting today and that is something we need to continue to do," Three Rivers coach Stacey Burkey said. "We are not going to be able to rely on that three-run homer. We are going to have to manufacture runs." With the wind blowing in, the Raiders did just that against Williams Baptist. Needing insurance runs late, Garyn Stewart drove in Dylan Kater with a groundout to short. Reece Reading followed him with a sacrifice fly to score William Stallings. Earlier in the game, Kater walked, stole second, took third after the catcher's throw went into center field, and scored when the center fielder lollygagged and took too long to field the ball. The Raiders were helped along by six walks, four hit batters and four errors in the nightcap and scored their eight runs while getting four singles and a double. "Offensively, our hitters weren't chasing. The last couple of weeks we've done a lot better job of that," Burkey said. "I feel like our guys are showing some more maturity at the plate, as far as hitters go, with their ability to not chase pitches." The Raiders built a 5-0 cushion after five innings. Fernando Burgos (1-0) allowed one hit through four innings with five strikeouts, fi ve walks and two hit batters to get his first win of the season. He stranded the bases loaded in the first inning and seven runners total. The Eagles (9-27) still had one hit in the sixth and scored three runs after getting three straight singles helped along by two Three Rivers errors.
Cameron Johnson, who relieved Burgos, had a two-run lead with the bases loaded in the sixth when he got a groundout to escape. The Eagles again loaded the bases with one out against Three Rivers pitcher Parker Dent in the seventh. A couple hits away from an interesting game, Dent got a strikeout and a groundout to short to end the game. "Our pitching did a pretty good job for the most part today. We walked a few guys, it would have been nice to have been a little more efficient than that," Burkey said. Kater and Shelby Quiggins each scored twice for the Raiders. Beau Burson had a home run in the opener for the only outlier on a day scattered with singles, walks and situational hitting. The Raiders again stayed patient at the plate and drew nine walks plus a hit batter. Of their six hits, there were five singles and Burson's two-run homer. Preston Hart, Matt Robbins and Stallings all drove in a run with a sacrifice fly. Leadoff hitter Drew Evans reached base in all four at bats and fi nished 2 for 2 with a run and two walks. Reading drew three walks and scored a run. Garrett Payne (1-0) allowed three hits and three walks with a strikeout over four innings. Bryce Alcorn allowed one hit over two innings in relief and Ty Lumley allowed a walk with two strikeouts in pitching the seventh. Three Rivers was tied at three going into the bottom of the third with the heart of the lineup coming up. The first three batters reached and scored on defensive mistakes and Robbins' sacrifice fly. The Raiders added a run in the fourth and three more in the sixth to close out the scoring.
Scott Borkgren - Daily American Republic