Unearned runs thwart Tiger Sharks start
Coach Ashley Summerlin and his Port St. Joe baseball team found little to cheer about during the first week of the 2022 season, losing their first three games by a combined score of 35-12.
On Tuesday, Feb. 22, the Tiger Sharks paid a visit to Bristol and took on Liberty County (2-1). The Bulldogs put five runs on the board in both the second and third innings on their way to a 13-6 win over St. Joe.
Although the Tiger Sharks outhit the Bulldogs 7-6, 11 St. Joe errors allowed 12 unearned runs to cross the plate during the game.
In taking the loss for St. Joe, sophomore pitcher Fisher Vandertulip gave up only three hits and only one earned run while striking out four Bulldog batters.
On the offensive end, juniors Jack Trochessett and Jabara Pearson each stroked two hits, with Trochessett scoring once and Pearson twice.
Senior outfielder Dakota Quinn and sophomore Max Godwin hit singles, with Quinn scoring once, and sophomore Cullen Partie drove in two runs with his double.
Although Friday’s contest against St. John Paul II (2-0) was more competitive, the Panthers would prevail by a 7-6 score.
Scheduled as a home game for Port St. Joe, the Sharks had to go to Tallahassee to play because of a problem with umpire availability.
Down 4-0 through four innings, three Sharks touched the plate in the top of the fifth to make the score 4-3, but the Panthers got a run back in the bottom of the inning to stay in front 5-3.
Port St. Joe struck for three more runs in the seventh inning to take a brief 6-5 advantage, but could not hold the lead as St. John Paul closed the game out with two runs and gained a walk-off win.
Despite allowing only three hits and no earned runs in his two-and-two-third innings on the mound, Partie took the loss. Four Shark errors contributed to the final Panther runs.
At the plate, Quinn had two hits and scored a run. Junior Donovan Cumbie and senior catcher Caden Pruitt also had singles, with Cumbie scoring a run, stealing a base, and driving in two runs. Pruitt also had an RBI.
Vandertulip hit a double and scored a run, while Trochessett crossed the plate twice, stole two bases, and drove in a run.
The sun shone brightly on Saturday when the Sharks hosted Bainbridge, Georgia, but the Bearcats clouded up and rained 15 runs on the Sharks in an abbreviated three-inning rout.
Bainbridge sent 11 batters to the plate in the first inning, and five singles, two Shark errors and a hit batter later, had seven runs on the board.
In the second inning, center fielder Josh Beacham and third baseman Chris Cooper smashed bases-empty round trippers to give the Bearcats a 9-0 lead.
The St. Joe wheels came completely off in the top of the third inning. Of the 12 Bainbridge hitters who had plate appearances, two got a single, one got a free pass on a walk, and three others were hit by a pitch.
Three more Shark miscues in the field helped the Bearcats score six more runs to take a 15-0 lead. By rule, a game is over with that score after three innings.
Godwin gave the Tiger Shark fans something to cheer about when he led off the third with a single up the middle, but the next three batters failed to advance him, and the game ended with the Bearcats earning their first win of the season (1-3). Vandertulip took the loss.
On Tuesday, March 1, St. Joe travel to Sneads to take on the 1-1 Sneads Pirates. The Sharks will visit Bainbridge on Thursday, March 4.