Rams hold on for baseball win over Generals

Stonewall's first baseman Matthew Dove beats Strasburg's Christopher Shelton on a bunt attempt during fourth inning action Monday at First Bank Park in Strasburg. Rich Cooley/Daily

STRASBURG — At times it was obvious that Strasburg and Stonewall Jackson’s baseball game Monday was the opening contest of the season.

The two teams combined for 11 errors, and the Rams built a big lead and held on for an 11-8 non-district victory over the Generals.

Strasburg coach Joe Bauserman said that he was pleased with the start the Rams had, but they weren’t able to keep playing at a high level.

“I was hoping that was what the team was going to look like this year,” Bauserman said of Strasburg’s start. “And then we kind of reverted back to last year a little bit and had about four or five errors and probably had about four or five mental errors on top of that.”

The Generals took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Logan Ritchie singled and went to second on an error. Two batters later, Ritchie scored on an error.

Strasburg's Patchrick Kennedy dives for home plate as Stonewall's David Moomaw puts on a late tag during fourth inning action Monday evening at First Bank Park in Strasburg. Rich Cooley/Daily

The Rams came back with three runs in the bottom of the first.

Corey Keller led off with a single off Stonewall Jackson starting pitcher Tyler Somers. Jutin King was hit by a pitch, and Keller scored on an error to tie the game, 1-1.

With two outs, a two-run triple by Cameron Harmon gave Strasburg a 3-1 edge.

The Rams eventually built the lead to 10-2, aided by a four-run fourth inning.

Three runs scored on errors in the fourth inning, and a Chase Hart added an RBI single.

Strasburg's Justin Day runs for third as Stonewall's Tyler Somers throws out a runner on a ground ball during fifth inning action Monday evening at First Bank Park in Strasburg. Rich Cooley/Daily

Strasburg starting pitcher Trevor Sager pitched four solid innings, before being relieved by Brandon Sealock. Sager, a sophomore, allowed just three hits and struck out five.

“Trevor did good,” Bauserman said. “He wore down there at the end. Trevor’s just going to throw strikes and he’s able to locate his fastball and his curveball. So he’s always going to be a pretty solid pitcher for us. He just does what we want and you can’t ask for more than that.”

Trailing 10-2 in the top of the sixth, the Generals scored six runs to cut the lead to 10-8.

The Rams committed three errors in the inning, and Somers added an RBI single. Strasburg pitchers Sealock and Justin Day combined for three walks in the inning as well.

“I do like how we fought,” Stonewall Jackson coach Jeremy Knight said. “We could have been slaughtered tonight real easy, but we came back and made it a ballgame. And we were one hit away from tying this thing up.”

Stonewall's Austin Ritchie leaps forward to make an outfield catch during second inning action Monday evening. Rich Cooley/Daily

The Rams added another run in the bottom of the sixth on Stonewall Jackson’s sixth error of the game.

The Generals left the bases loaded twice in the game, including the bottom of the sixth.

“We had our opportunities,” Knight said. “If we play a little bit cleaner in the field and get a few more hits it’s probably a different ballgame.”

The Generals, who were playing without senior Nick Dotson due to injury, used just two pitchers. Freshman Austin Ritchie relieved Somers in the fourth inning.

The Generals were led by Austin Ritchie and and Matt Dove at the plate with two hits each.

Strasburg's Justin King fields a ground ball during first inning action Monday evening. Rich Cooley/Daily

Keller led the Rams with three hits.

The Rams have a young squad, including two freshman and six sophomores.

“We’ll just keep working,” Bauserman said. “We’ve got some young guys, but they’re expected to play at a high level. So we’re going to expect that out of them. And we’re just going to continue to work and hopefully get better.”