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IAC / NTL BASEBALL: SAYRE ROLLS OVER TIOGA IN OPENING GAME OF 'BATTLE AT THE BORDER' (2021-05-01)

By TIM BIRNEY
Valley Sports Report
TIOGA CENTER — Tioga kept it close, but Sayre piled up runs late in the contest on its way to a 20-2 win here Saturday morning in the opening game of the “Battle at the Border” baseball showcase.

Tioga coach Kevin Evanek tipped his capped to the unbeaten Redskins.

“Sayre is a great team,” he said. “We knew that coming in, and they were as good as advertised — probably the best team we’ll see this year.

“But, we had our opportunities,” noted Evanek. “We had the bases loaded three times, and we struck out all three times to end the inning.

“An error here and there made for a couple big innings for them,” added Evanek. “It seemed that third out took a long time for us to get today.”

The Tigers dropped to 0-1, while Redskins improve to 11-0,

“It’s the first time we’ve seen a fastball in two years, and they’re well into their season, but hats off to them,” said Evanek. “They’re going to have a tremendous postseason, I’m sure.”

Sayre coach Jamie VanDuzer said the Redskins found their offensive groove once Tioga started Derrick Gage left the game.

“I thought (Derrick Gage) pitched really well,” he said. “Once we got into the bullpen, there were a few walks, and a couple of errors, and we hit the ball pretty good.”

Sophomores Lucas Horton and Zach Garrity clubbed two-RBI doubles in the top of the first to give the Redskins a quick 4-0 lead.

The Tigers answered with a run in the home half of the inning. Sophomore Bryce Bailey led of the frame with a singled, and advanced to third base on a one-out double by 8th-grader Conlan Taylor.

Senior Derrick Gage plated a run with an RBI groundout to trim the deficit to 4-1.

Back-to-back walks loaded the bases for the Tigers, but Sayre starter David Northrup registered a strikeout to avoid any further damage.

Gage, Tioga’s starting pitcher breezed through the second and third innings,  but a two-out walk in the fourth inning loaded the bases. Senior Zach Moore hit a rocket up the middle that caromed off Gage’s leg and into foul territory, plait sophomore Jackson Hubbard, who led off the inning with a single, to extend the lead to 5-1.

Gage stayed in the game, but walked Northrup to force home a run. He was relieved by senior Seth Franks, who notched a strikeout to end the inning.

Junior Brayden Horton and Moore each had two-RBI doubles in the fifth inning to put the Redskins ahead 10-1.

Bailey led off the home half of the fifth with a single, and junior Cobe Whitmore followed with a long double to left field. With one out, Gage walked to load the bases, but Northrup notched back-to-back strikeouts to escape the jam.

Brayden Horton smoked a two-run home run over the left-field, an junior Kannon VanDuzer added a three-run triple in Sayre’s seven-run sixth-inning rally that extended the lead to 17-1.

Garrity added a two-run blast in the seventh inning.

Garrity had three hits, including a home run and a double, one run scored, and five RBI, and Moore had three hits, including a double, one run scored, and three RBI to pace Sayre’s 13-hit attack.

Brayden Horton homered and double, scored three runs, and had four RBI in the win, while senior Jake Burgess singled, scored three runs, and drove in two runs, Lucas Horton doubled, scored twice, and knocked in two runs, and VanDuzer doubled and drove in three runs.

Senior Jordan Goodrich tripled and scored two runs for the Redskins, while sophomore Jackson Hubbard singled and scored two runs, Northrup scored three run, and juniors Mason Houseknecht and Josh Arnold, and sophomore Kegan Hayford scored one run.

Northrup earned the win for Sayre, allowing one run on five hits, while striking out 11 and walking four in five innings of work.

“(David) Northrup pitched well. He was all over the strike zone,” said VanDuzer. “Nothing bothers him.”

Arnold pitched the final two innings, allowing an unearned run on one hit, while striking out four and walking three.

Bailey stroked three singles and scored one run to lead Tioga at the plate, while Gage singled, scored one run, and drove in one run, and Taylor and Whitmore each doubled.

Gage was tagged with the loss. He allowed six runs — five earned — on four hits, while striking out four and walking six in 3 2/3 innings of work.

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IN PHOTO 1: Sayre’s David Northrup. … PHOTOS BY TIM BIRNEY.


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