Prep Baseball Report

Covenant and Highland Travel to Woodberry Forest

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By John Nolan
Assistant Director of Scouting/Content Management 

Highland 5, Covenant 4 (10)
Orange-A beautiful spring day saw Woodberry Forest School hosting a series of VISAA II games. The first game of the day was between Highland School and Covenant School and featured a good matchup on the mound. Highland went with junior Josh Pittman for the start and Covenant tabbed junior Jacob Haney (William & Mary) for the start.

Both teams got a baserunner in the first, but nothing more. Covenant was also held scoreless in the top of the second. For velocities and scouting information on Pittman and Haney, check the Virginia/DC Scout Blog early next week. Highland would strike first as the bottom of the second started off with a double to right by junior catcher Jacob Zoller. After a strikeout, freshman Luke Burner drew a walk. Both Burner and Zoller would score later in the inning on wild pitches, and Highland led the game 2-0 after two.

Both pitchers had scoreless third innings. Covenant got on the board in the fourth as Tyler Mahone (Longwood) drew a leadoff walk and was bunted to second, before eventually moving to third and scoring on a passed ball and wild pitch to cut the Highland lead to 2-1. The Hawks responded as Burner doubled to left with one out and scored later in the inning on an error to make the score Highland 3, Covenant 1 after 4 innings.

The top of the sixth would see the Eagles tie the game as they scored their second run on an error that left runners on the corners with one out. Sam Lepage was able to get a squeeze bunt down successfully to tie the game.

The Eagles had turned to senior lefty Matt Shobe (Bucknell) in the fifth and he threw scoreless fifth and sixth innings. The top of the seventh saw Highland move on from Pittman, bringing in senior Shane Buss (Juniata) from shortstop. Buss would get an out before Shobe singled for his second hit of the game. Shobe then stole second and advanced to third when the throw went into centerfield. Will Moore (William & Mary) successfully got the squeeze bunt down and Covenant took its first lead of the game, 4-3.

The Hawks were able to tie the game in the bottom of the seventh when Zoller singled to right center. After tying the game, Highland loaded the bases with one out, but Shobe was able to get a pair of strikeouts to end the threat and send the game to extra innings.

He eighth inning came and went relatively quietly and the top of the ninth saw Shobe lead off the inning with his third single of the game and steal his way down to third. Buss was then able to pick up three strikeouts and leave Shobe there to end the threat.

Shobe worked a pretty easy ninth and Covenant came to the plate in the tenth with the bottom of the order up. Junior Trent Miller led the inning off with a double and advanced to third as he was just barely in ahead of the tag on a bunt that put runners on the corners with no outs. Buss made a diving catch on a soft line drive on a slash attempt for the first out. With one out, Covenant tried the squeeze for a third time, and this time the Eagles did not get it down, effectively ending the threat.

The bottom of the tenth saw a pitching change as the Eagles turned to junior Luke Burton. Burner got the inning started with an infield single and he was bunted down to third. After Burton got a comebacker, junior centerfielder Noah Lerman lined a pitch to right center for a base hit, scoring Burner and ending the game in walk-off fashion.


Woodberry Forest 6, Highland 3
The second scheduled game of the day saw the host school, Woodberry Forest, enter the action as the Tigers took on Highland. The Hawks started junior Timmy Stephan and the Woodberry went with sophomore lefty Kent Walker.

The Tigers got things going quickly in the bottom of the first as they loaded the bases with two outs and freshman third baseman John Harris dropped a two run single into leftfield, with a third run scoring after misplay in the outfield. 

After a quiet first against Walker, Highland was able to load the bases in the second before a pop out brought the inning to a close. Stephan worked around a leadoff single to post a scoreless inning of his own.

The third saw some life from the Hawk offense as junior Josh Pittman singled with one out and was driven in by a Shane Buss groundout to cut the deficit to 3-1. The bottom of the third saw the Tigers again load the bases with two outs and again saw a freshman come up with a big hit, as Jameson Rice singled to right center to drive in two runs and stretch the lead to 5-1.

As the game progressed, the Hawks came closer and closer to figuring out Walker. They got two runners on in the fourth before hitting into a double play to end the inning. They loaded the bases in the fifth with one out but were only able to get one run. The Hawks got another run in the sixth and had two on with one out with the deficit down to 5-3 when Woodberry went to the pen for sophomore centerfielder Cameron Hill, who got a double play and ended the threat.

The Tigers added an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth and Hill got two quick outs to start the seventh before allowing a single and a walk to bring up the tying run with two outs in Mark Terrell. Hill got him to strikeout to end the game and lock down the save.

Covenant 16, Woodberry Forest 10
The third game of the day saw Covenant returning to the field to play Woodberry Forest. The Eagles started junior Will Moore (William & Mary) and the Tigers went with senior Andrew Holmes.

The Eagles got off to a quick start, scoring two runs in the top of the first and threatening to get more before lining into a double play to end the inning. The Tigers answered quickly as Moore walked the leadoff batter and the second hitter reached on an error. Senior Patrick McDonald (Notre Dame) ripped a triple to deep right to tie the game, and then scored on an infield single two batters later.

The top of the second saw more Covenant offense as the inning started with a walk and a single before Sam Lepage ripped an RBI single to left to tie the game. After a pair of outs, Will Moore came up and hammered a three-run home run to left field, making the score 6-3.

Woodberry would pick up another run in the bottom of the second and then make a pitching change to start the third. Ten runs and another pitching change later, Covenant had stretched its lead to 16-4 after two and a half innings.

Woodberry deserves some credit for not giving up, as the Tigers began to chip away immediately, scoring three runs in the bottom of the third and chasing Moore from the mound as the Eagles turned to junior Tyler Mahone (Longwood). Woodberry continued to chip away as the Covenant bats went silent after the ten run explosion. The Tigers scored one in the bottom of the fourth and two in the bottom of the fifth to cut the lead to 16-10. After again holding Covenant scoreless in the top of the sixth, the game was called for darkness, with the Eagles winning.


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