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By David Sharp
The potent Atlanta Hornets sent five baseballs over the fence, including Jason Viers and Preston Peavler grand slam home runs during a 14-1 Tri-County Conference win over Brashear (3-3, 3-2) in September 23, 2021 play.
The Tigers put two runners on base in their first inning. Jace Snelling singled followed by Brandon Jochimsen being hit by a pitch. Atlanta hurler Tanner Malusky got out of the first inning without allowing a run.
Landon Gilliland gave the Hornets a two run lead with a first inning home run over the fence. Starting pitcher Carson Erwin set the Hornets down in order during their second inning.
Carson Erwin drove the ball over the center field fence for what proved to be the lone Tiger run in the third inning. Jace Snelling singled and moved to second on a wild pitch. Tanner Malusky retired the Tiger’s third and fourth place batters for a 2-1 Hornet lead.
Atlanta got another home run, this time by Preston Peavler during a two run third inning. Atlanta stretched their lead to 4-1 after three complete innings.
Macon Reed drew a one out fourth inning walk and later scored. An error and an intentional walk to Landon Gilliland set up a long fly ball off the bat of Jason Viers. Some Brashear supporters did not believe the ball went over both sections of the left center field fence.
The officials ruled a grand slam home run. The turn of events appeared to take some of the steam out of the Tiger side. Atlanta led 8-1 after four innings.
Brandon Jochimsen relieved for Brashear at the start of the fifth inning. Carson Erwin pitched four innings with four walks (one intentional) and three strikeouts on five hits. Three of the eight runs charged to Erwin were earned.
Jarod Peavler drew a leadoff walk in the fifth inning. Morgen Rhoads came off the bench and hit a two run homer for a 10-1 lead. Sawyer Viers and Landon Gilliland stroked base hits.
Anthony Shaw made a good defensive play in right field, starting a relay play that cut down what would have been the winning run at the plate for the second out of the fifth inning.
Jason Viers walked filling the bases with two out. Preston Peavler hit a 3-1 pitch over the fence for a grand slam home run. Atlanta improved to 9-1 on the season, 3-0 in the conference with the 14-1 win.
Atlanta scored 14 runs on ten hits. Landon Gilliland was 3-3 with two runs scored and two batted in. Jason Viers scored three Hornet runs and drove in four more. Preston Peavler was 2-3 with two home runs and six runs batted in.
Tanner Malusky was the winning pitcher, striking out six batters with no walks on three hits in five innings pitched. The Brashear run was earned.
“I saw some good clean baseball out there,” Atlanta coach Justin Miller said. Atlanta played errorless baseball. Brashear was charged with two errors on the day. “If our pitching is sharp, the rest of the game is going to fall into place. There weren’t many flaws with what (Tanner) Malusky did on the mound tonight.
“They drove the ball tonight. The guys played with a lot of confidence,” Justin Miller said.
Brashear scored one run on three hits. Jace Snelling was 2-2 at bat for Brashear. “We were getting frustrated with officiating. We can’t let that happen. We were letting our emotions show a little bit.”
“That’s the glories of playing on a little field. They have it when they are at home, and we have it when we are at home,” Brashear coach Jacob Bleything said. “It’s an equal playing field when we step out here.”
“We didn’t deliver with the bats, and they did.”