Madison County shuts out Central

WOODSTOCK – Madison County coach David Londrey got exactly what he was looking for out of his team Monday night.

The Mountaineers used a sterling pitching performance and timely hitting to pull out a 4-0 victory over Central in Bull Run District baseball action.

“That was a great ballgame,” Londrey said. “We played heads-up baseball tonight.”

It all started with Madison County pitcher Zach Adams, who threw only 74 pitches and allowed only six hits. It was also Adams’ first complete game of the season.

“He pitched a great game,” Londrey said. “I couldn’t ask for anything more out of him. He let his defense behind him make plays, and the guys behind him made plays.”

Madison County (6-12, 6-8 Bull Run) took the early lead in the top of the second. Dylan Berry led off with a single, and James Graves followed with a double.

With one out, Chris Smith was hit by a pitch from Central starting pitcher Luke Estep to load the bases. Zach Adams drew a walk to give the Mountaineers a 1-0 lead.

Isiah Breckenridge flied out. Madison County didn’t try to score on the throw home, but a throwing error to get Adams as he was trying to go to second allowed Graves to score.

“We started playing from the first inning,” Londrey said. “There were times this season where we didn’t start to play until the fourth or fifth, and then we’re trying to play catch-up and then it was too late.”

The Falcons (5-12, 4-9 Bull Run) had a real opportunity in the bottom of the second. With two outs, Brent Richman and Brady Baker hit back-to-back singles off Adams. Estep drew a walk to load the bases, but Jared Rice flied out to end the inning.

“Too many fly balls,” Central coach Donn Foltz said. “Our guys pitched well enough to win, but we didn’t have any offense.”

The Mountaineers added another run in the top of the third. Nic Smith drew a leadoff walk. One out later, Berry singled to put runners on the corners.

Graves drew a walk to load the bases and a Cole Smith ground out extended the lead to 3-0.

In the top of the fourth, Adams struck out but advanced to throw on a dropped third strike and a throwing error. With one out, Isiah Smith reached on an error. An RBI single by Nic Smith gave the Mountaineers a 4-0 lead.

Central’s Hank Hoover led off the bottom of the sixth with a triple, but the Falcons were unable to score.

Estep went four innings for the Falcons, allowing five hits and striking out three. Hamman pitched the last three innings, allowing only one hit.

“Luke [Estep] did a good job,” Foltz said. “His pitch count got up. … He went to three balls in the count too many times. Zach [Hamman] came in and threw hard, and did a good job.”

The Mountaineers went on a big run at the end of the season and advanced to the Group 2A state semifinals last year, and Londrey said his team needs to keep playing like Monday night to try to do it again this season.

“We went on that run last year, and hopefully we can do it again this year,” Londrey said.

Hoover led the Falcons with two hits.

The Falcons have three more games this week, including a doubleheader Tuesday against Manassas Park. Foltz said the Falcons still have time to get some momentum going before the postseason starts.

“We’ll be all right if we can get the bats going,” Foltz said. “We’ll keep working hard and working on it.”

Contact staff writer Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 168, or tkeeler@nvdaily.com