Opp pitching staff combines for no-hitter

Published 10:28 am Thursday, June 9, 2016

Opp’s pitching staff, led by Tanner Hall (5), caused the Evergreen batter’s fits in Thursday night’s victory.

Opp’s pitching staff, led by Tanner Hall (5), caused the Evergreen batter’s fits in Thursday night’s victory.

The Opp 12U All-Stars used strong bats and solid pitching to knock off the Evergreen 12U All-Stars 13-0 in the first round of the Cal Ripken 12U District Tournament Thursday night at Johnson Park.

“The first few innings were pretty sloppy,” Opp 12U All-Star head coach Scott Gafford said. “We started playing better in the third and fourth. I was really proud of the way our pitchers came out and threw strikes. We just have to keep pitching like that and start hitting the ball earlier in the game. We were up 6-0 tonight before we even got out first hit, and we can’t continue to do that. Overall, I was pleased with the way we battled.”

Opp’s three pitchers Tanner Hall, Jackson Pierce and Cale Sumblin combined to no-hit the Evergreen All-Stars.

In the top of the first inning, Pierce drew a walk to open then game and then came around to score on an error off the bat of Robbie Gafford.

Ethan Cox then reached on error to give Opp runners on first and third. Dawson Booth drove in Gafford with a sacrifice to third base.

Two more runs came around to score off errors to put Opp on top 4-0.

On the mound, Hall got the start and struck out the first two batters he faced.

Opp continued to tack on runs in the top of the second inning with two runs scored off wild pitches. After two innings of play, Opp was on top 6-0 and there still hadn’t been a single base hit.

Opp got the bats going in the top of third inning and broke the game open for an 11-0 lead.

J.T. Dee led off the inning with a walk and then came around to score on line drive single up the middle by Walt Spurlin for the first hit of the ball game.

Sumblin followed with a single and then a sacrifice from Tripp Hawthorne gave Opp runners on second and third.

Owen Patterson took advantage of the runners in scoring position when he ripped a single to center that drove in two runs.

Curt Zorn followed with a double over the head of the right fielder that scored Patterson for a 10-0 Opp lead.

A single from Pierce then drove in Zorn.

In the bottom of the third, Pierce sat the Evergreen batters down in order with three strikeouts.

Dee started off the top of the fourth inning with a double to right field and later scored on sacrifice from Spurlin.

Opp’s final run of the game came on RBI double from Patterson that scored Hawthorne from second.

With the win, Opp moves on to the winner’s bracket and will take on Brewton and 6 p.m., tonight.

Tonight’s other match up will be between Covington County and East Brewton at 8 p.m.