Valley comeback falls short in loss to Benjamin Russell

Published 9:39 pm Wednesday, March 15, 2023

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Early offensive woes plagued the Valley varsity baseball team in the Rams’ 7-5 loss to Benjamin Russell on Wednesday.

Valley head coach Mike Meadows knows that it really just came down to one inning.

“We had a chance to win in the bottom of the seventh,” Meadows said.

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“That was on me. I thought the ball was down. I told my runner to go, and the ball was caught. It’s not on my guys.”

Seth Hammock started on the mound for the Rams and had a difficult first inning allowing four runs. Hammock allowed three  hits and had three walks in the first inning, but he also added a strikeout. Valley got a hit from Jackson Sanders in the bottom of the first, but the Rams had three outs in the next three plate appearances to end the inning scoreless.

Hammock and the Valley defense locked down in the second and forced three outs in three at-bats, but Valley failed to score in the bottom of the second despite Ashton Carter being set up in scoring position. Benjamin Russell hit a single in the top of the third and set up the base runner to get one score, and Valley found itself down 5-0 heading into the bottom of the third.

Sanders got on base thanks to a walk, but the Rams couldn’t take advantage with three outs on the next three plate appearances.

Valley’s defense showed up with three field outs at the top of the fourth, but the Rams couldn’t score in the bottom of the fourth despite getting Carter on third base again.

The Rams stayed alive thanks to three field outs in three at-bats at the top of the fifth, and Valley started picking things up at the bottom of the inning.

After two walks, CJ Chambley hit a two RBI single to bring Sanders and Cullen Kennedy home and cut the lead to 5-2.

Valley immediately followed with an RBI single from Trevor Rudd and a hit by pitch to close the lead to 5-4.

The Rams tied the game in the bottom of the sixth after a Rudd RBI double, but Valley couldn’t build on the momentum.

The Wildcats scored two in the top of the eighth, and the Rams couldn’t answer in the bottom of the inning.