Devils clinch second place in district
The Mathews High School varsity baseball team crushed West Point last Thursday, 12-3, and lost a 2-1 pitchers’ duel the following day in a pair of Tidewater District road games.
On Tuesday, Mathews defeated West Point for a second time in less than a week to clinch second place in the district. Mathews beat the visiting Pointers, 6-2. "We didn’t come out and play with a lot of enthusiasm tonight, but it was good enough to win," head coach Nick Naglieri said after the win.
Nick Stump got the start against West Point and the win, going all seven innings, giving up two runs on three hits, striking out seven. At the plate the Devils were led by Daniel Mitchem who went 2-for-3, Chase Kemp, Austin Kemp, Michael Cunningham, Chris Davis and Chase Buchanan, who each had singles, and Stump, who helped out his own cause with a double.
The Devils dominated from the beginning of last Thursday’s West Point game, scoring three runs on the first 10 pitches of the inning, with Davis and Mitchem starting things off with doubles and Chase Kemp following with a triple.
Mathews tacked on one run in the third inning and took control of the game with three in the fifth and four more in the sixth. Stump pretty much held West Point at bay, giving up two runs, two of which were earned, on five hits and one walk, while striking out eight. The Devils played good defense, with a nice diving catch in left field by Cunningham.
Offensively, the Devils picked up 13 hits, led by Kemp with a 4-for-4 performance at the plate. Mitchem, Davis and James Pavik each collected two hits, while Stump, Cunningham and Ryan Ewell also added to the offensive output with hits.
On Friday, Mathews traveled to Deltaville to take on the Chargers. According to Naglieri, "we were underdogs and nobody gave us a chance … but our team proved they were a resilient group of young men, losing to Middlesex 2-1 in nine innings."
A pitching duel between Ewell and Harley Moore of Middlesex broke out, with neither pitcher giving in. Mathews scored one run in the first and Middlesex tied the game in the second. After that, it was all pitching.