Thorsby blows out Verbena for first area win
Thorsby opened area play with a convincing 12-0 victory in five innings on the road against Verbena on March 21.
The game took a complete turn in the Rebels’ (7-4, 1-0) favor following a seven-run outing in the second inning, in which Thorsby batted around the lineup.
The offensive explosion was fueled by a two-run double by Cain Niece, as well as singles from Carson Cummings and Graham Blankenship.
Verbena (1-12, 0-2) starting pitcher Eric Mims had a rough day on the mound and struggled to locate his pitches, which supplied Thorsby with runners on base due to walks and hit batters.
Seven of the nine players in the Rebels batting order came around to score as part of the big second inning.
“We’re really starting to hit the ball and see it better,” Thorsby senior Bailey Sellers said. “That’s what we’ve been waiting on.”
However, Thorsby was not quite finished lighting up the scoreboard and added another four runs as insurance in the fourth inning.
Bailey Sellers also got it done on the mound with six strikeouts, while allowing just one hit on the day.
“It’s always easy pitching with the lead,” Sellers said. “We got the early lead and never really seemed in trouble. I knew that I could challenge them with the fastball, and even if they did hit it, that the guys would make the plays behind me.”
Fellow senior Logan Patterson came in to pitch the final inning in relief and sent the Red Devils down in order with a pair of strikeouts.
“With the pitchers that we’ve got, if we can play defense behind them, we’ve got a great opportunity to win,” Thorsby head coach Billy Jackson.
Verbena’s lone hit in the game was a single to right field off the bat of Austin Barber.
Jackson hopes that the fast start in area play will serve as momentum the rest of season and throughout the remainder of the area schedule.
According to Sellers, the Rebels had a decent season last year, but lost three of the four area games by a handful of runs combined and missed out on the playoffs.
“Anytime you win an area game, it’s a big deal,” Jackson said. “You could win every game, but if you lose your area games then you stay at the house at the end of the year.”