Pirates get past Dragons

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, May 10, 2000

WHEELERSBURG – Roger Snyder didn’t pay attention to the final score, but he couldn’t ignore the final outcome.

Wednesday, May 10, 2000

WHEELERSBURG – Roger Snyder didn’t pay attention to the final score, but he couldn’t ignore the final outcome.

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In a game closer than the final score, the Wheelersburg Pirates beat the Fairland Dragons 5-1 Tuesday in the Division III sectional finals.

"If it wasn’t for a few errors or a bad call, this is a 1-1 or no worse than a 2-1 game," said Snyder.

Fairland’s Stuart Shepherd pitched a four-hitter, struck out 11, and walked six in suffering the tough-luck loss. Wheelersburg’s Josh Newman, who has signed with Ohio State, allowed six hits, struck out nine, and walked four.

"Stuart outpitched Newman for six innings," said Snyder. "Stuart did a good job. I have no complaints. He walked six which is uncharacteristic of him, but I think he was just trying to pitch too fine sometimes.

"And we helped Newman out. We had people on base, and then we’d swing at bad pitches in the dirt."

Both teams left seven runners on base.

After Wheelersburg left the bases loaded in the first, Fairland came right back to take a 1-0 in the top of the second.

Toby Morrison doubled, Shepherd walked, and J. W. Jones beat out an infield hit to load the bases. A squeeze bunt attempt failed, but K. C. Jones blooped a two-out base hit to score Shepherd.

Wheelersburg tied the game in the bottom of the inning.

Dustin Woodrum walked, Jeremy Williams sacrificed him to second, and he scored on a double by Michael Perkins.

The Pirates took the lead for good with a run in the third.

Newman had a leadoff walk to start the rally. He tried to steal second and Michael Branon grounded out to second with Newman going all the way to third on the play where he was called safe on a controversial call. Chad Newsom then reached on a two-out error as Newman scored.

Woodrum hit a leadoff home run in the fourth to make it 3-1.

The final two runs scored in the fifth.

Newman singled, stole second, and, after two strikeouts, Newsom and Adam Conn walked to load the bases. Woodrum was safe on an error as two runs scored.

Snyder praised Newman’s efforts.

"Offensively, he got them going. He’s an athlete," said Snyder.

Fairland finishes the season 14-6 and won a share of the Ohio Valley Conference.

"That was a heck of a year for our kids. I never dreamed we’d have this kind of season when we began. The kids played well and they played well together. It was a fun year," said Snyder.

"This is one of those years you hate to see end."

Morrison went 2-3 for Fairland and Newman 2-2 for the Pirates.

Fairland 010 000 0 – 1 6 3

Wheelersburg 011 120 x – 5 4 0

Stuart Shepherd and Jarred Schneider. Josh Newman and Lance Davis. W-Newman (9-K, 4-W). L-Shepherd (11-K, 6-W). 2B-Fairland: Toby Morrison; Wheelersburg: Michael Perkins. HR-Wheelersburg: Dustin Woodrum. Hitting-Fairland: Kyle Leadmon 1-3, Toby Morrison 2-3, J. W. Jones 1-3, Josh Dunfee 1-3, K. C. Jones 1-2 (RBI); Wheelersburg: Michael Perkins 1-4, Josh Newman 2-2, Woodrum 1-2. LOB-Fairland 7, Wheelersburg 7.