Vikings get good work from young pitchers in victory

Published 1:20 am Tuesday, March 16, 2010

VIDALIA — Vidalia baseball coach Johnny Lee Hoffpauir needed an opportunity to get some more pitchers some experience before the Vikings begin district play next week.

Monday’s game against Kilbourne was just that opportunity.

Hoffpauir was able to get some inexperienced pitchers some time on the mound, and they performed well in Vidalia’s 13-3 victory.

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Corey Williams started and pitched the first three innings for the Vikings, allowing two runs on three hits while striking out five.

Caleb Vines then took the mound and finished up the final two innings, allowing just one run on two hits.

“Corey did a good job for us,” Hoffpauir said. “He’s a sophomore who only had three innings of varsity baseball under his belt. And Caleb is a junior and this is the first time he has ever pitched in a varsity game.”

With two of Vidalia’s pitchers suffering injuries, the Vikings are a little short on arms, which is why Monday’s game was so important.

“It’s important (to try some new pitchers),” Hoffpauir said. “We’ve got three games this weekend and then district starts Monday. We’ve got to get through the tournament and get ready for district.”

Vidalia’s batters helped out its two young pitchers by scoring bushels of runs, including five in the bottom of the first inning.

Seth Thompson had an RBI single to plate the first run and both John Brixey and B.J. Neely followed with two-run singles to make the score 5-1 after an inning.

After Joseph Shumate singled in a run for Kilbourne in the top of the second, Seth Barlow answered with a towering solo home run to left field in the bottom of the inning.

Vidalia tacked on another run in the third when Trey Lillie scored on an error, making the score 7-2.

Vidalia plated four more runs in the bottom of the fourth. Neely hit an RBI double and Devin Barnes had a run-scoring single to make the score 10-2.

Tucker Bruce then scored on a wild pitch to plate the fourth run of the inning.

After Kilbourne scored a run in the top of the fifth, the Vikings ended the game by plating two runs in the bottom of the inning.

Nate Bozeman brought home the first run with a fielder’s choice and Matt Souderes ended the game with an RBI single.

The Vikings will host the Vidalia High School Invitational this weekend, which will also feature the Trinity Episcopal Saints.

The Vikings will play one game on Friday and two games on Saturday before getting into district play next Monday against Jena.