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Fighting Tigers#039; offense unloads on Gallipolis

Talk about making a good first impression.

Jeff Waginger made his varsity start a memorable one as he pitched a complete game 5-hitter to lead the Ironton Fighting Tigers to an 8-1 win over the Gallipolis Blue Devils Thursday.

Waginger struck out nine and did not walk a batter in going the distance.

"That was a nice effort by Waginger. So far, we can't complain about our pitching. It's been very good," Ironton coach Mark Lewis said.

Ironton, 1-2, got its offense untracked with 11 hits including Dustin Preston who was 4 of 4 with a home run and four runs batted in. Chris Rakes went 2-for-3 with a double and two RBI.

"We finally hit the ball. Hopefully, this is a sign we're starting to get our timing down," Lewis said.

Ironton came out firing with a run in the first inning. Chad Miller and Dennis Gagai walked, a passed ball moved the runners up and Preston had a one-out RBI single.

The Fighting Tigers blew the game open with seven runs in the fifth inning.

Rakes, Miller, T.J. Keith and Gagai all singled to produce two runs and Preston followed with a 3-run homer and the lead was 6-0.

An out later, Ryan Walker and Greg Linn singled and Rakes drove home Walker and pinch-runner T.J. Jewell with a two-out double to cap the scoring.

Gallipolis, 1-2, spoiled the shutout with a run in the sixth when Kyle Burnett and Justin Saunders singled and Luke Haislop reached on an outfield error.

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Brad Caudill and Luke Haislop. Jeff Waginger and Dustin Preston. W-Waginger (9-K, 0-W, 0-ER). L-Caudill (9-K, 3-W). 2B-Ironton: Chris Rakes. HR-Ironton: Dustin Preston. SB-Ironton: Dustin Preston, Greg Linn. Hitting-Gallipolis: Justin Saunders 2-3, Shawn Thompson 1-3, Kyle Burnett 2-2; Ironton: Chad Miller 1-3, T.J. Keith 1-4, Dennis Gagai 1-3 (RBI), Dustin Preston 4-4 (4 RBI), Ryan Walker 1-3, Greg Linn 1-2, Chris Rakes 2-3 (2 RBI).