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Ironton falls to Pirates

WHEELERSBURG – The little things mean a lot.

Friday, April 20, 2001

WHEELERSBURG – The little things mean a lot. The little things just didn’t go the Ironton Fighting Tigers way as they dropped a 2-1 heartbreaker to the Wheelersburg Pirates Thursday.

"We had our chances, but just a couple of little things didn’t go our way," Ironton coach Mark Lewis said. "We had a runner on second one time and Matt White lines a single to center, but the centerfielder in playing shallow and the ball was hit so hard we can’t score the runner.

"And they had seven hits, but three were infield hits. One barely rolls down the third base line and they score a run on the play. We didn’t get any breaks."

The loss spoiled a strong pitching effort by Ironton’s Chad Parker who was on a 70-pitch count due to an earlier elbow injury.

Freshman Nick Collins pitched two scoreless innings including working out of a bases-loaded jam in the sixth.

"I can’t complain about our effort," said Lewis. "We played hard, we battled, our pitches didn’t give in, and we made some good defensive plays. It’s disappointing to lose, but I’m not disappointed with our effort."

Joe Schwamberger went 6.1 innings to get the win. He struck out seven, walked four, and gave up four hits.

Wheelersburg (15-2) pushed across a run in the third inning.

Jeremy Williams walked to start the inning, Michael Perkins singled, and both runners moved up on a wild pitch.

Parker got the next two batters out, but Lance Davis had a slug bunt roll dead along the third baseline as Williams scored.

Ironton (7-7) tied the game in the top of the fourth when Parker doubled, moved up when Greg Mountain was safe on an error, and Matt White lined a two-out single to center.

But the Pirates got the winning run in the bottom of the fourth.

With one out, Cody Piguet singled, stole second second and came home when Joe Perkins singled.

The Fighting Tigers squandered several scoring chances. They left the bases loaded in the fourth and sixth innings, and had a chance to tie the game in the seventh.

Drew Mains drew a one-out walk and Josh Sands followed with a base hit off relievers Michael Brannigan. Mains tried to go to third base on the play but was called out despite the fact he look safe because the tag was not applied.

White was 2-for-2 to lead Ironton. Joe Perkins went 2-for-3 for the Pirates.

Ironton plays at 5 p.m. Friday at Portsmouth.