Blowfish Lose Another One-Run Game to Open Second Half

Posted 6/27/22

The nightmare which was the end of the first half of the Coastal Plain League season continued Monday to start the second half for the Lexington County Blowfish.

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Blowfish Lose Another One-Run Game to Open Second Half

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The nightmare which was the end of the first half of the Coastal Plain League season continued Monday to start the second half for the Lexington County Blowfish.

The 10-9 loss at Florence which extended the Blowfish's losing streak to seven and 11th in the past 12 games followed a familiar theme. Errors and wild pitches once again kept Lexington County from holding a 5-0 lead and clinching the Interstate 20 series.

In addition, the Blowfish dropped to 0-7 in one-run games. The fifth in a row came as reliever Dalton Mims' wild pitch with two outs allowed Aaron Staehely to score the winning run.

It was the 48th wild pitch of the season for Lexington County (10-15, 0-1), which also committed three errors to increase the season total to 39.

The defeat overshadowned a four RBI night for Brock Vradenburg to become the CPL leader. Ryan Ouzts drove in three runs, including his third home run of the summer and Cole Mathis kept the Blowfish ahead in five innings on the mound. 

Lexington County took a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Cam Dean was hit by a pitch and eventually scored on a fielding error on a groundball hit by Brock Vradenburg.

After three hitless innings, the Blowfish's Billy Amick and Ouzts broke through with back-to-back hits. Amick singled and scored from first base off Ouzts' two RBI doubles.

The Blowfish extended their lead to 5-0 in the fifth on an RBI double by Dutch Fork graduate Crosby Jones of The Citadel and two-run single by Vradenburg.

Florence answered with seven unanswered runs, starting with two in the bottom half of the inning. Mason Staz hit an RBI sacrifice fly and Jacob Hinderleider lined an RBI single off Mathis with two outs.

Joseph Lafiora relieved Mathis in the sixth inning. He gave up a leadoff double to Tyler Dellerman who scored on Jack Hammond's single to make it 5-3.

Parker Whittle replaced Lafiora in the seventh inning. He only faced two batters as Francisco Barbieri hit a leadoff single and South Trimble followed with a two-run homer to deadlock the game at 5-5.

Austin Sandifer replaced Whittle and he hit Hinderleider to open his appearance. The next two Florence batters reached on infield errors, the latter on an errant throw by Braylin Marine, whose 11-game hitting streak ended, to Vradenburg that scored two runs to give the Flamingos a 7-5 lead.

Lexington County turned the tables on Florence in the top of the eighth. Vradenburg reached first on an errant throw by pitcher Reed Metz, then advanced all the way to third base on another throwing error. Ouzts then tied the game with a 2-run homer over the left-centerfield wall.

Mims entered the game in the top of the eighth. He retired two batters after giving up a single to Staz, only to have Hinderfeider put the Flamingos ahead with a two-run homer.

The top of the ninth saw Sykes reach second on a throwing error and score on Jones' second RBI double. Pinch running for Jones, Joshua Hernandez stole third and scored on Vradenburg's RBI fielder's choice.

A one-out walk to Staehely and single by Hammond put the winning run on third base. Mims struck out English and had Staz facing a 1-2 count when his pitch went high past catcher Talmedge LeCroy and allowed Staehely to race home to end the game.

The Blowfish will get a two-day break before resuming action with a "split" doubleheader Thursday. A team will make its lone visit to Asheboro, N.C. while another will play an exhibition against the Catawba Valley All-Stars.

Lexington County, Blowfish, Vradenburg, Crosby Jones, Mims, Dean

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