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Ironton ‘wood’ not be denied of Wooden Bat Classic wins

Ironton Fighting Tigers’ outfielder Ethan Duncan makes a running catch of a ball hit over his head during Saturday’s 11-1 win over Lucasville Valley. (Kent Sanborn of Southern Ohio Sports Photos)

Jim Walker
jim.walker@irontontribune.com

This wasn’t Babe Ruth and Ernie Shore, but it’ll do.
Ruth — who was one of the best pitchers in the major leagues his first five seasons including two 20-win years — once walked the first batter he faced, got in an argument with the umpire and was ejected.
Shore came on, picked off the runner at first base and then retired 26 straight batters for a combined no-hitter.
In somewhat similar fashion, Ethan Duncan and Ryan Ashley combined on a one-hitter as the Ironton Fighting Tigers beat the Lucasville Valley Indians 11-1 in five innings on Saturday during the first game of the annual Mike Burcham Wooden Bat Classic.
Duncan struck out two batters and walked two but left due to arm trouble. Ashley came on to pitch 4.1 innings of one-hit baseball as Ironton evened its record at 2-2.
“We came ready to play in the first game and jumped out to an early lead. Offensively, we were aggressive and Ryan Ashley came in and pitched lights out,” said Ironton coach Travis Wylie.
Although Duncan couldn’t pitch, he was just fine at the plate as he went 2-2 with a double and three runs batted in.
Kyle Howell had a big game for Ironton as he went 3-4 with two doubles and an RBI.
Ironton took command in the first inning with four runs.
Howell doubled, Cameron Deere was hit by a pitch, Duncan walked and Howell scored on a passed ball.
Gunner Crawford singled for a run and Duncan came home on another passed ball. Brycen Thomas walked and Ashley grounded out as a run scored.
Valley got its only run in the second inning when Kayden Mollette walked, Blake Wood singled, Trevon Donini was hit by a pitch and Jared Morrow walked.
Ironton got the run back in the bottom of the inning when Deere walked, stole second and Duncan had an RBI double.
The Fighting Tigers opened up a 10-1 lead with five runs in the fourth.
Freeman started the rally with a base hit and scored on Howell’s second double. Howell stole third and scored on a hit by Deere.
After Deere stole second and went to third on a passed ball, Duncan hit a sacrifice fly.
Crawford drew a walk, Thomas singled and Ashley had a two-out, two-run double.
Ironton ended the game early in the fifth
Freeman walked and came around to score after Howell singled, Deere was hit by a pitch and Duncan collected the walk-off RBI single.
The second game was called after five innings with Ironton beating Lexington Bryan Station 11-9.
“We faced a talented team that was well-coached. They came out and scored a bunch early and we were able to have a big inning to get back into the game. Ashley came through with a big hit to give us the lead at the end,” said Wylie.
The Defenders went up 5-0 but Ironton erupted for nine runs in the third inning.
Crawford reached on a missed third strike, Thomas singled, Ashley walked, Sloan hit into a fielder’s choice for an RBI, Will York singled, Freeman and Howell reached on errors, Deer was hit by a pitch, Duncan and Crawford walked and Ashley had a two-run single.
Bryan Station tied the game in the third but Ironton got the winning runs in the fourth on singles by Duncan and Crawford an Ashley’s two-run double.
First Game
Lucasville 010 00 = 1 1 0
Ironton 410 51 = 11 11 0
Jared Morrow and Kayden Mollette. Ethan Duncan, Ryan Ashley (1) and Brycen Thomas. W-Ashley (IP-4.1, H-1, ER-1, K-1, BB-6). Duncan (IP-0.2, K-2, BB-2). L-Morrow (K-5, BB-6, ER-11). Hitting-LV: Blake Wood 1-1; Ironton: Kyle Howell 3-4 rbi 2-2B, Cameron Deere 1-1 rbi, Ethan Duncan 2-2 2B 3-rbi, Gunner Crawford 1-2 rbi, Ryan Ashley 1-2 2B 3-rbi, Collin Freeman 1-2.
Second Game
Bryan Station 324 00 = 9 7 2
Ironton 090 2x = 11 6 2
Tyler Marcum, Jordan Alvarez (3) and Kobe Wallace. Nolan Schreck, Jacob Sloan (2), Kyle Howell (5) and Brycen Thomas. W-Sloan (IP-2.2, H-3, R-4, ER-2, K-5, BB-3). Save-Howell (IP-1.0, H-1). Schreck (IP-1.1, H-3, R-5, ER-4, K-1, BB-4). L-Marcum (IP-2.0, H-3, R-9, ER-2, K-3, BB-4). Alvarez (IP-2.0, H-3, R-2, ER-2, K-1). Hitting-LBS: Dylan Lynch 3-3 3-rbi 2B, Sam Burdette 1-3 2-rbi, Colby Walters 1-3 rbi, Jaden Goodwin 1-2 2B 2-rbi, Bryson Hobbs 1-2; Ironton: Ethan Duncan 1-2 rbi, Gunner Crawford 1-2, Brycen Thomas 1-3 rbi, Ryan Ashley 2-2 2B 4-rbi, Jacob Sloan rbi, Will York 1-2 rbi.