Blue and Gold Spring | Summer 2021 Volume 2 • Issue 1 - Page 64

Bluefield State was 11-11 , highlighted by a doubleheader sweep of Alice Lloyd on the road days before they left for Alabama .
Following the Big Blue were NAIA schools Rust College , Florida Memorial University and Edward Waters College .
The Opener : Late Inning Heroics vs . Edward Waters .
Bluefield State and Edward Waters kicked off the tournament Wednesday morning . Even though the Bearcats ( 14-24 ) came in with a lightly regarded record , they gave the Big Blue a run for their money .
Bluefield State started the scoring with three runs in the third inning on singles by Ty Sizemore and JR McRee .
Edward Waters countered with one in the fourth and three more in the fifth to take the lead at 4-3 .
Then the Big Blue rallied for two in the bottom of the seventh . McRee singled to start things off and Kevon Moxey doubled him home . Taylor Tibbs clinched it with another double .
Daniel Rayfield started for the good guys . He pitched 5 1 / 3 innings allowing four runs ( three earned ).
Kenrick Mendez pitched 3 2 / 3 innings of scoreless ball and got the win .
Final score : 5-4 Big Blue . Game Two : Upset !
Thursday the Big Blue took on Xavier . As top seed , the Gold Rush had earned a Day One bye . They were fresh , with enough noisy fans in the seats to make it feel like a home game .
Xavier ’ s ace , Blair Frederick , was on the mound . A powerful lefthander , the graduate transfer from Louisiana State University came into the game with a 2.30 ERA and averaging more than seven strikeouts per game . This was a day for opportunistic baseball .
Kevon Moxey ( left ) and Tournament MVP Tanner Brandon ( right ).
Austin Stambaugh led off and reached first on an infield error . He moved to second on JR McRee ’ s groundout . Tanner Brandon doubled him home with one to the gap in right center . Sensing opportunity , Brandon stole third and came home on a wild pitch .
Thursday the Big Blue took on Xavier . As top seed , the Gold Rush had earned a Day One bye . They were fresh , with enough noisy fans in the seats to make it feel like a home game .
Then Frederick settled down . And did he ! Frederick struck out the next seventeen batters in a row before leaving after six innings .
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