Patriots blow-out Ravens in nightcap 17-1

Randall Connor delivering a strike in the fifth inning. (Ed Berti)
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A bang-bang play at home plate.  (Ed Berti)

In the nightcap, the second game of the doubleheader, the Patriots exploded in the seventh inning for 8 runs to complete the sweep with a 17-1 blow-out victory over Rocky River.

The Patriots cruised throughout the contest with an easy victory.  After a scoreless first inning, the visitors in game two scored a run on a ground out deep in the hole to drive in the run from third base for a early 1-0 lead in the second.

Independence added on three more runs in the third, another run in the fourth, and four more runs in the fifth to take a commanding 9-0 lead.

In the sixth, the Patriots had their second scoreless inning going down in order which was certainly the exception in the nightcap.  The Ravens were able to scratch an unearned run in the bottom half of the inning for their only score of the game.  Therefore, after six innings the Patriots had a comfortable 9-1 advantage.

However, in the top of the seventh, the Patriots erupted for 8 runs against the Ravens overstretched and weary pitching staff.  The hurlers just could not consistently locate the strike zone, walking eight batters and five on 3-2 counts.  Then with a single by Lucas Turner for two RBI’s, and sacrifice fly balls delivered by Michael Rawlings, and Bryson Jusko would the merry-go-round end.

Ben Hagan started on the mound for the Patriots.  Big Ben pitched four solid innings, allowed no runs, two hits, no walks, while striking out seven Ravens.  Connor Randall followed for two innings, he allowed an unearned run, two hits and had one strikeout. Lucas Turner pitched the seventh to wrap up the game and threw just 12 pitches to strike out the side to complete the dominating blow-out performance.

The offense was led by Bryson Jusko who went 3-3 with two runs batted in for the game.  Raja Milton was 1-2, with two walks, and two RBI’s.  While Korey Haley went 2-3 at the plate to lead the Ravens.

Independence is now 10-8 overall, and 7-5 in the Southwestern 4A Conference.  The Patriots will play in a tournament during spring break against Indian Land, located in Fort Mill, South Carolina, on Monday April 15th.

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Ed Berti
Ed is retired and remains active as a freelance writer, local journalist and independent contractor. He is engaged in print and electronic media writing stories covering business, sports, hometown news and veteran's affairs including articles of interest to various media outlets. Ed is a graduate of Wagner College where he earned an MBA and holds a BBA from Pace University.
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