Lawson homers, fans 10 as Pilots blank Crestview
Wednesday, May 07, 2014 12:04 AM
By John Parent
Crestview third baseman Jordan Miller takes a cut during the Knights’ 10-0 loss to Ayersville on Tuesday night. Miller reached base twice and stole a base. (Times Bulletin/Tina Eley)
Times Bulletin Sports Editor
CONVOY — There wasn’t much good that came out of Crestview’s 10-0 run-rule defeat to Ayersville on Tuesday night, with the lone exception of getting senior right hander Bryce Richardson back on the mound.
Richardson hadn’t pitched since breaking his nose during a game against Allen East on April 21 and has been wearing a protective mask both at the plate and while playing his normal shortstop position. If the Knights are going to make noise in the Division IV tournament this season, they’ll need Richardson to be sharp on the mound.
“What was good about this game was getting Bryce Richardson back,” Crestview coach Jim Wharton said after the game. “We knew we were only going to use him for 30-35 pitches, and he gave us what we needed.”
After working around a two-out single in the first, Richardson retired the first two batters of the second before Ayersville’s Luke Lawson grounded a single past third. Lawson moved to second when Clay Long was hit by a pitch, setting up the Pilots’ first run.
Lawson broke for third on a stolen base attempt and the throw from Crestview’s catcher sailed into left field, allowing Lawson to score.
“You look at that play early, when the runner got too far off second and we don’t tell our pitcher to step off, then (our catcher) doesn’t get his feet set and throws the ball away. From there, we just continued to make mistakes,” added Wharton.
Unfortunately, it was just the beginning of the defensive miscues for the Knights, who have dropped two straight to fall to 12-5 on the season.
Jordan Roop took the mound to start the third, but was greeted by singles on each of the first three pitches he threw, leaving Ayersville with the bases loaded and nobody out. Pilot catcher Zack Clark hit a deep fly ball to dead center that looked like trouble, but Cam Etzler made a diving catch. The second Ayersville run of the day tagged and scored from third on the play, but Etzler got up and alertly got the ball back to the infield in time to catch Matt Engel trying to get to third.
The Pilots (16-4) tacked on one more in the inning, as Jacob Kahle came around on Dawson Dales’ RBI double with two away.
The game got out of hand in the fourth, however.
Austin Zachrich started the inning with a double and moved to third on a ground out. Engel then hit a chopper to second that should have been the second out, but the ball got through, allowing the batter to reach and a run to score. After a pop-up for the second out, Clark singled and Dales brought in two with a double to right on a fly ball that was lost in the overcast sky. A run-scoring single followed and ended Roop’s day on the mound.
Things didn’t get better for Crestview’ however, as Elliott Callow was greeted by Lawson, who promptly drove a ball out over the center field fence for a two-run homer and a 9-0 Ayersville lead. Another lost-fly-ball-turned-double in the fifth led to the final Ayersville run.
The Knights, meanwhile, could get nothing going against the Ayersville starter, Lawson.
He struck out two in the first and two more in the second. Lawson allowed just four hits and fanned 10 in the game.
Crestview’s only serious threat came in the fourth, when singles by Roop and Nate Owens started the inning before Jordan Miller reached via hit by pitch to load the bags with no one out.
A clutch hit or two in that situation may have started a swing in the momentum of the game, but Lawson would have none of it. Nine pitches later, Lawson had struck out the next three hitters in order to retire the side and preserve the shutout.
“I think, number one, he was getting that low strike call. And when they’re calling it that low for a guy who throws that hard, it makes it tough to hit,” Wharton said. “(Lawson) brought it to another gear. He had a pit bull mentality.”
The Knights are back in action on Wednesday, when they visit Bath.
Ayersville 012 61- 10 13 4
Crestview 000 00- 0 4 0
Odom 2b 4-0-1-0, Engel dh 4-2-2-1, Kahle cf 4-1-3-1, Clark 3b 3-1-1-1, Dales lf 4-1-2-2, Reed rf 3-1-1-1, Lawson p 2-2-2-2, Long 1b 2-0-0-0, Zachrich c 3-1-1-0
Etzler cf 3-0-0-0, Helm 1b 2-0-0-0, x- Clifton 1b 1-0-1-0, Roop rf-p 2-0-1-0, x- Lippi rf 1-0-0-0, Owens c 2-0-1-0, Miller 3b 1-0-1-0, Richardson p-ss 1-0-0-0, x- Callow p 1-0-0-0, Overmyer lf 1-0-0-0, Rickard ss-rf 2-0-0-0, Rolsten 2b 1-0-0-0, x- Camp ph 1-0-0-0
HBP- Long (by Richardson), Miller (by Lawson)
SB- Lawson, Miller
2B- Engel, Dales (2)
Lawson (W) 5.0 IP 4 H 0 R 0 ER 1 BB 10 K
Richardson (L) 2.0 IP 2 H 1 R 0 ER 0 BB 2 K
Roop 1.2 IP 8 H 6 R 5 ER 1 BB 0 K
Callow 1.1 IP 3 H 2 R 2 ER 0 BB 1 K
WP- Lawson, Balk- Callow