Northside Defeats Rockbridge County on Senior Night



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By Jon Kaufman
Contributor

Friday-Senior Day is always a special game for those athletes who are graduating high school. Today, a hefty twelve Northside Vikings would play their last game at their home field, hosting the Rockbridge County Wildcats.

The Vikings sophomore right hander Sam McLaughlin and the Wildcats junior righty Trevor Ramsey were a study of styles. McLaughlin is a tall, strong sidearmer with a sharp breaking ball and Ramsey throws from over the top and mixes in an array of pitches on all corners of the plate. With a hard wind sweeping across Clyde Strutt Field, the matchup promised a pitcher’s duel.

The first three innings were scoreless, as McLaughlin steered through some early trouble. In the visitor fourth, the Wildcat’s catcher Ty Bennett took a fastball in the back to lead off the inning, followed a Reeves Whitmore opposite field single. Noah Ramsey’s sacrifice bunt move the runners in scoring position, and Cody Bartly’s sac fly plated Bennett. Brandon Minter’s two-out base hit scored Whitmore and the Cats claimed a two run lead.

JD Mundy (Virginia Tech), perhaps the finest high school position player I have witnessed this season, was issued a four pitch walk to open the sixth inning, after doubling in the first and lining a single over the shortstop’s head in the third. The curious pass to Mundy in a two run game would haunt the Wildcats before the end of the inning.

Clean-up hitter Brandon Golden joined Mundy on base when an errant breaking ball grazed his shoulder. Lefty Trevor Dudley came in to relieve Ramsey, and Logan Altizer’s two RBI single tied the score at two runs for each team. Josh Hardister was hit by a pitch loading the bases for sophomore Evan Parks. With the infield in, Parks laid down a perfect squeeze bunt on Dudley’s first pitch, slowly rolling onto the first baseline chalk, and staking Northside to a thin one run lead.

McLaughlin sent the Wildcats in order in the seventh, sealing the deal for twelve happy Northside seniors. The Northside hurler allowed only four hits on the day, with one walk, a hit batter, and two earned runs. Mundy snatched a likely double in the seventh, going to his backhand and delivering a strike into first baseman Hardister’s glove, showing that the Tech signee that he is not just a .508 hitter, but a sharp fielder as well.

 

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