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Flyers settle in to beat Raiders, 10-1

Settling down got the St. Joseph Flyers stirred up.

Once the Flyers got their opening game jitters under control, they rolled past the River Valley Raiders 10-1 Monday.

Caleb Blackburn shook off a rocky start to pitch five solid innings. He struck out nine and gave up just three hits and no earned runs. Tanner Riley worked the final two innings and struck out a pair while walking one.

“After Caleb settled down and got in rhythm he pitched pretty well,” said Flyers coach Greg Bryant.

“Once we settled down at the plate we hit the ball. It was a pretty efficient win for the first game. We played well in the field and ran the bases and that’s a good sign early in the year.”

River Valley got a run in the third when Stephen Brown singled, stole second, and came home on a throwing error.

The Flyers tied the game in the bottom of the inning when Payton Blair singled, Pat Gagai had a sacrifice bunt, and Caleb Blackburn singled.

St. Joseph scored four times in the fourth to lead 5-1.

Tanner Riley walked, moved up on a wild pitch and took third on a ground out. T.J Young walked, Cody Blackburn was safe on an error to score Riley. Levi Hopkins singled for a run and Blair put down a squeeze bunt for a run.

Gagai walked and Caleb Blackburn was safe on an error as a run scored.

The Flyers put the game out of reach with five runs in the sixth inning.

Blair walked, Gagai singled and Chad Harvey and Caleb Blackburn walked for a run. Riley was hit by a pitch to score pinch-runner Anthony Whaley.

George McCown and Cody Blackburn each walked to force in runs and Spencer Schwab was safe on an error to score the final run.

Caleb Blackburn was 2-3 to pace a seven-hit attack.

St. Joseph visits Harvest Christian Tuesday.

River Valley 001 000 0 = 1 3 3

St. Joseph 001 405 x = 10 7 1

Clayton Curnutte, Goodrich (6), Tyler Noble (6) and Justus. Caleb Blackburn, Tanner Riley (6) and Pat Gagai. W-Blackburn (9-K, 6-BB, 1-H, 0-ER). Save-Riley (2-K, 1-BB). L-Curnutte (2-K, 6-BB, 6-H). 2B-River Valley: Stephen Brown. Hitting-River Valley: Stephen Brown 1-2, Zach Polcyn 1-4, Tyler Noble 1-3; St. Joseph: Payton Blair 1-3, Pat Gagai 1-2, Caleb Blackburn 2-3, Tanner Riley 1-1, T.J. Young 1-2, Levi Hopkins 1-2.