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Flyers use pitching, defense to top East

Good pitching and defense are a perfect marriage.

On Tuesday, St. Joseph pitcher Caleb Blackburn and his defense said “I do” as the Flyers slipped past the Sciotoville East Tartans 2-1.

Blackburn struck out nine, walked three and gave up just five hits.

“It’s easy to pitch that way when your defense is playing well behind you, and it makes it easy to play defense when you’re throwing strikes. They go hand-in-hand,” said Flyers coach Greg Bryant.

“(Blackburn) kept the ball down and he was throwing his curveball for strikes.”

The Flyers broke a scoreless tie with a run in the fourth inning.

Harvey walked, stole second, moved to third on a wild pitch, and scored when Pat Gagai grounded out.

East tied the game in the fifth when David Blair singled, stole second, took third on a balk, and came home on a ground out.

St. Joseph pushed across the winning run in the sixth inning;

Payton Blair singled, took second on a throwing error, Harvey put down a sacrifice bunt, and scored when Jerrod Laber singled to left field.

“We needed a game like that. Hopefully we can build on this win to finish out the season,” said Bryant.

Blair was 2-for-3 as the Flyers managed just three hits.

St. Joseph (7-6) hosts Harvest Christian Thursday.

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Caleb Blackburn and Pat Gagai. Rodney Hatch and David Blair. W-Blackburn (9-K, 3-BB). L-Hatch (1-K, 3-BB). Hitting-St. Joseph: Payton Blair 2-3, Jerrod Laber 1-3; Sciotoville East: Jon Garrett 2-3, Brent Ehrhart 2-3, David Blair 1-3.