Trojans late rally edges Ironton

Published 12:00 am Sunday, April 9, 2000

PORTSMOUTH – Looks can be deceiving.

Sunday, April 09, 2000

PORTSMOUTH – Looks can be deceiving.

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Just when it looked like the Ironton Fighting Tigers would remain unbeaten, the Portsmouth Trojans rallied for six runs in the sixth inning to take a 7-6 win Friday.

"We had our chances, and we played well enough to win," Ironton coach Mark Lewis said. "Mark Mains pitched really well and we should have been out of the sixth inning. But the breaks just didn’t go our way and that’s the way baseball goes sometimes."

Mains pitched five strong innings allowing just one run on six hits and three strikeouts. But Portsmouth used its big sixth inning rally – aided by a controversial call – to rally for the win.

The loss also ruined an outstanding performance by Ironton catcher Jon Sites who went 4-for-4 and threw out two baserunners attempting to steal.

"We hit the ball well as a team, but right now Jon Sites is really stinging the ball. He’s in a hitting groove," said Lewis.

Ironton (4-1) took a 1-0 lead in the fourth when Sites, Chad Parker, and Clark Cooper all singled.

Portsmouth tied the game in the bottom of the inning on singled by Kyle Porter and Jerry June that put runners on first and third, and a stop-steal scored Porter.

The Fighting Tigers went on top 4-1 in the sixth.

Sites triggered the rally again with a double, Parker singled, and Jimmy Peyton had an RBI single.

Mark Mains, Greg Mountain, and Drew Mains were all hit by pitches to score two more runs.

Portsmouth then scored six runs in the bottom of the inning thanks to a controversial call.

Dustin Pendleton was hit by a pitch and Kyle Porter singled. Dillon Staas attempted to sacrifice, but the popped the ball in the air and Mains make a nice catch. Porter strayed too far from first base and Mains threw to Cooper to complete the double play.

Justin McNelly walked and Brad Porter blooped a single to right as Pendleton scored.

McNelly went to third to set up a double steal attempt. But on the double steal play, Matt Johnson threw the ball home and Sites put the tag on McNelly for the third out.

Or so it seemed.

McNelly, who leaped back eight feet from the plate trying to avoid the tag, was ruled safe even though Sites appeared to make the tag.

Down 4-3, Jason Fleming walked and Jay Stomback, Greg Estep, and Jeff Swords all singled to give Portsmouth a 7-4 lead.

Ironton mounted a comeback with one out in the seventh when Sites singled and Peyton smashed a long, high home run to left. Mark Mains walked, but the next two batters popped out to end the game.

"We didn’t quit. This is a gritty bunch that doesn’t quit. They like to compete," said Lewis.

Besides Sites, Parker was 2-4 and Peyton 2-4 with three runs batted in.

Ironton 000 103 2 – 6 11 2

Portsmouth 000 106 x – 7 11 0

Mark Mains, Jason Harmon (6) and Jon Sites. Josiah Young, Case Kegley (6), Greg Estep (6) and Brad Porter. W-Estep (1-K, 2-H, 2-ER). L-Mains 1-1 (3-K, 2-W). 2B-Ironton: Drew Mains, Jon Sites. HR-Ironton: Jimmy Peyton. SB-Portsmouth: Brad Porter, Jerry June; Ironton: Mark Mains. HBP-by Kegley (Greg Mountain, Mark Mains, Drew Mains); by Mains (Dustin Pendleton, Brad Porter). DP-Ironton 1 (6th). LOB-Ironton 8, Portsmouth 8. Hitting-Ironton: Drew Mains 1-3, Jon Sites 4-4, Chad Parker 2-4, Jimmy Peyton 2-4 (3 RBI), Clark Cooper 1-4 (RBI), Dallas Carmon 1-3; Portsmouth: Jason Fleming 1-3, Jay Stomback 1-4 (RBI), Greg Estep 1-4 (RBI), Jeff Swords 1-3 (2 RBI), Dustin Pendleton 1-2, Kyle Porter 3-4, Jerry June 2-2, Brad Porter 1-2 (RBI).