Cardinals fall to Cannons on ninth-inning single

FRONT ROYAL – Front Royal battled back throughout the night, but still came up short on Friday night.

An ninth-inning RBI single by Purcellville’s Diandre Amion lifted the Cannons to a 5-4 Valley Baseball League victory over Front Royal at Bing Crosby Stadium.

“We’re just not executing,” Front Royal manager Victor Gomez said. “I think we had maybe four times where we had runners on third base, less than two outs and we’re just not getting it done. It’s tough to sit back and watch, but I’ve just got to stay behind these guys and keep supporting them and trusting them and eventually we’ll get it done. We’ve got a good ballclub. We just got to grind through this tough stretch right now.”

It was the fourth straight loss for the Cardinals, including a 12-inning loss to Charlottesville on Thursday.

With Friday’s game tied at 4, Purcellville’s Deaires Moses singled with one out in the top of the ninth. He stole second and scored on Amion’s RBI single.

Purcellville (2-5) took the lead in the top of the second. Ray Hernandez led off with a single. Hernandez moved to second on an error. Purcellville’s Tommy Ziegen drew a walk from Front Royal starting pitcher Chris Van Camp. With two outs, Matt Reed’s two-run single gave the Cannons a 2-0 lead.

Moses drew a walk and Eriq White followed with an RBI single for a 3-0 lead.

Front Royal (4-4) cut the lead to 3-1 in the bottom of the second. Chris Medina and Zac Wiley had back-to-back singles off Purcellville starting pitcher Alex London. With two outs, Clay Hunt reached on an error, which scored Medina.

The Cardinals tied the game in the bottom of the fourth. Front Royal’s Emilio Abreu and Rey Pastrana had back-to-back singles off London. Hunt followed with an RBI single to cut the lead to 3-2.

Front Royal’s Yamil Pagan drew a walk to load the bases, and a sacrifice fly RBI by Bernie Camargo tied the game.

The Cardinals had 10 hits in the game, but left 11 runners on base.

“The bats are coming,” Gomez said. “We’ve progressed (this week). We started off with a real bad one-hit shutout, and we’ve progressed every day this week offensively. It’s just a matter of getting the hits at the right time, and we’re just not doing that at all right now. Those situations are the key ones and we’re just not executing.”

Purcellville took the lead in the top of the eighth. Raul Cabrera hit a solo home run off Front Royal reliever Jacob Ramos.

The Cardinals rallied in the bottom of the eighth to tie the game again. Pastrana led off with a double off Purcellville reliever Tyler Yancy and moved to third on a wild pitch.

Hunt drew a walk. With two outs, pinch-runner Blake Whitney scored on a wild pitch to tie the game at 4-4.

Van Camp went seven innings for the Cardinals, which Gomez said was important after the 12-inning game on Thursday.

“He did a great job,” Gomez said of Van Camp. “Any time you go 12 you use your bullpen a lot, and he did a great job of holding in there for me.”

The Cannons were led at the plate by Moses and Hernandez with two hits each.

Medina led the Cardinals with three hits.

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