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Bulldogs blanked by Providence Academy

BY ALLEN LAMOUNTAIN

STAR CORRESPONDENT

HAMPTON – Lanky righthander Tyner Simpson pitched 5.2 innings of shutout ball for Providence Academy as the Knights spoiled opening night for Hampton’s baseball squad. Simpson gave up just three hits while striking out eight and walking three in a 10-0 win over the Bulldogs at Scotty Bunton Field on Monday evening.

“This is not how we wanted opening day to go,” Bulldogs manager Nicolas Perkins said. “Ultimately we scored zero runs and you cannot win a baseball game without scoring a run.

“We make no excuses, we will just get back to work tomorrow and Wednesday and prepare for our next game on Thursday at Johnson County.”

The Knights (1-0) got on the scoreboard in the first frame against senior Parker Henry on a walk, and an infield error brought home the first run of the contest. A ground ball to first base by Simpson brought in another run and a sacrifice bunt off the bat of Manny Leslie made it a 3-0 contest.

Brody Hicks came in for Henry and got the first two outs of the second frame before Nathan Einsfelder started a Providence rally with a single to center.

A second infield error by the ‘Dogs on an attempted pick off put Einsfelder at third and an infield single from Mabry Runnells brought him home for a 4-0 Knights lead.

Simpson helped his own cause with an RBI single that staked Providence to a 5-0 lead. Caleb Royston came on for Hicks and he pitched well. Royston pitched four innings giving up one run on two hits striking out four and walking three.

“Caleb is a great story,” Perkins said. “He was involved in a very bad vehicle accident in the fall and for him to be able to be out here on the field is a blessing. He pitched well and showed well for himself today.”

Hampton (0-1) loaded the bases in the second inning on a single from Royston and walks to McKinley Kuhn and Conor Jones but were unable to push a run across as Simpson struck out Hicks to end the threat.

“We give credit where it is due and he pitched well,” Perkins said. “We tip our cap to their pitcher and we just have to get back to work. Baseball is a game where you play a lot of games, so we have to get over this one quickly and get ready for the next opponent.”

With two away in the Hampton sixth, Providence manager Jeff Reed brought Runnels in and after plunking Kuhn he struck Josh Whitson out to end the inning and pitched a one-two-three bottom of the sixth to complete the shutout.

Providence scored four runs in the top of the seventh against two Hampton pitchers with the third Bulldog error bringing home one run and a single by Einsfelder bringing home two more and Runnells RBI hit completed the scoring.

Providence 10-0

Providence 320 001 04 – 10 10 1

Hampton 000 000 00 – 0 3 3

W – Simpson. L – Henry.

2B – Leslie.