Golden Raiders push across lone run in top of first

By Rebecca Pierson
STAR Correspondent

   For those who love a pitchers game, you missed one if you weren't on hand Wednesday night at Joe O'Brien Field, with 'Betsy (11-11 overall) losing 1-0 to Sullivan North (13-9 overall).
   Raider Trey Mosley threw five hits for no runs while Cyclone Travis Bowers allowed eight hits with a lone run in the first.
   The Golden Raiders' C.J. Hackler first took the plate for an out caught in right field. Chris Eaton bounced a drive to Troop Harris at third for a single, then Shaun Wright hit another one down to third for another single.
   From there, Derek Williams bounced it to Mitchell Blevins at shortstop to bring Eaton in at home. That would be the run of the night.
   In the bottom of the first, Nat Treadway drove the ball past second for a single. Bowers would then nail a line drive to right field for another single.
   Ricky Garrison attempted a sacrifice hit, but a miscommunication between second base and third put the squeeze on Treadway between Jon Yates at home and Shaun Wright on third, closing out the inning.
   "It was a pitchers duel," Elizabethton head coach Steve McKinney said. "Bowers threw a great game. We had a couple of base-running mistakes that hurt us early in the game. They got one in the first inning, and we didn't get any, but we kept battling."
   "What else can you say about Travis' performance on the mound?" he said. "He did a super job. I just keep bragging on the kid because he kept putting it in the mitt and has done a great job. He's done his part. We just needed to dig a little deeper to get it."
   "We had a great approach and a great game," North head coach Steve Dixon said. "All the games in the conference are like this. That keeps us working.
   "We control our own destiny. It's a big win for us. It was a great defensive effort and a great effort on the mound."
   Sullivan North is currently second in the conference with No. 1 Unicoi County still on the upcoming schedule twice.
   Another big conference match-up is coming up for the Cyclones on Friday with a double-header at Volunteer. A good offensive outcome is what the team will be looking for.
   "I thought we played a pretty good defense," Bowers said. "Some mistakes, but we played a pretty good defense. We just didn't get the hits at the right times. [On Friday] we just need to hit it in good situations, play good defense and do the little things."
   McKinney is confident that both the offensive and defensive portions of their game will come together for them in due time.
   "We played pretty good defense," he said. "We had a couple of bad hops on our third baseman, but the kids just battled. They play hard.
   "It is hard to keep the kids up day in and day out. But we tell them that if they just keep battling, good things are going to happen for them. This would have been a big conference win for us, and it would have boosted our ego."