Rams’ rally comes up short

STRASBURG — Strasburg made a furious comeback on Tuesday night, but still came up a little short.

The Rams scored five runs in the bottom of the seventh, but couldn’t get the pivotal tying run across in an 8-7 Bull Run District loss to William Monroe.

“It was a hard loss, especially because of the way it ended,” Strasburg coach Jeff Smoot said. “… We were not very consistent tonight. At times we played well and at times we didn’t play well. I think the biggest thing was we did not get a hit when we needed to get one.”

The Rams left 13 on base in the three-hour 12-minute game. Strasburg trailed 8-2 entering the bottom of the seventh.

Brian Bohlman started the inning on the mound for the Dragons. Strasburg pinch-hitter Justin King singled, Ryan Bowers drew a walk and Colten Smith singled to load the bases with no outs.

King was forced out at home on a grounder hit by Eric Reynolds. Austin Miller and Brian Scholten drew back-to-back walks to score two runs and cut the lead to 8-4. William Monroe’s Timothy Eppard relieved Bohlman. Adam Miller and Justin Rickard hit back-to-back RBI singles to cut the lead to 8-6.

Josh Pritchett followed with a sacrifice fly RBI to cut the lead to 8-7 with two outs. Nate Butler was hit by a pitch to load the bases again, but Eppard struck out Bowers to end the game.

The Dragons scored two runs in the top of the second. William Monroe’s Charlie Richards drew a one-out walk from Strasburg starting pitcher Butler. With two outs, Richards stole third and scored on a throwing error on the pickoff attempt. Later in the inning, Strasburg attempted to pick off pinch-runner Tyler Trevillian at second base. A throwing error allowed Trevillian to be a safe at second and he stole third and home with no one covering the bases.

“Defensively, we had some breakdowns, and we didn’t throw enough strikes,” Smoot said.

The Rams tied the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the third as the Dragons made two errors. Pritchett led off with a single against William Monroe starting pitcher Cody Spencer. With one out, Bowers singled and he and Pritchett eventually scored on a William Monroe error.

William Monroe scored five runs in the top of the fourth with just three hits. An error scored two runs, and a wild pitch scored another with the bases loaded. William Monroe’s Caleb Adams also had an RBI walk with the bases loaded.

The Rams had plenty of opportunities throughout the game. Smoot said that William Monroe’s Spencer had a lot to do with that, especially early in the game.

“(Spencer) was a quality guy they had out there,” Smoot said. “He was able to make some quality pitches in key situations.”

The Rams were led by Pritchett and Smith with three hits each.

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