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By David Sharp
Two pitchers on each side turned in fine performances during a cold, windblown March 24, 2022 varsity baseball game at North Shelby. Raider coaches and organizers worked eight hours preparing the field for a well played contest. North Shelby (2-0) pushed two sixth innings runs across the plate for a 2-0 win.
Two solid baseball teams had a base runner each in the first three innings. Jack Reeves singled for Brashear with one out in the Tiger third inning. Kyle Smith was hit by a Carson Erwin pitch in the Raider second. Neither team scored.
The contest was knotted at no runs each through five full innings. Brashear (0-1) threatened in their sixth inning but could not score. Robert Uhlmeyer pitched the first five innings for North Shelby.
Uhlmeyer struck out eight batters with two walks on four hits of shutout baseball. Kyle Smith tossed the last two innings, picking up the win in relief. Smith struck out three batters with one walk on two hits of no run ball.
Lane Stutsman singled leading off the Brashear sixth inning. Brandon Jochimsen walked. Kyle Smith struck out the next batter after a tough at bat. Avery Zentz doubled. Carson Orr threw a Brashear runner out at the plate for the second out of the inning.
Kyle Smith struck out a batter to end the inning with runners on second and third base in a then scoreless game.
“I have got to tip my hat to my pitching staff,” North Shelby coach Scott Gaines said. “This is our second game. Robert Uhlmeyer has started both games and hasn’t given up a run in either game yet. He still doesn’t have a win to show for it.”
“Kyle Smith came in. He has pitched some quality innings in relief,” Scott Gaines said. “He has got some big outs when we needed them. Hats off to (Carson) Erwin. He threw his butt off and kept us off balance.”
“We didn’t have many hits at all in the whole game,” Coach Gaines said. “We got some runners on. We finally took advantage of it in the sixth. We played solid defense. We got out of some situations on defense.”
Robert Uhlmeyer drew a one out walk in the Raider sixth. Kyle Smith doubled, putting runners on second and third. One run scored on a throwing error. Landon Bender drove in Kyle Smith with a ground out.
North Shelby took a 2-0 lead to the seventh inning. Kyle Smith set Brashear down in order ending the game with North Shelby claiming the 2-0 win.
North Shelby scored two runs on two hits. JD Rich and Kyle Smith had the North Shelby safeties.
Brashear was blanked on six hits. Lane Stutsman was 2-3 for the Tigers. Brashear stranded five runners. North Shelby left four men on base unofficially.
“It was definitely a pitcher’s duel tonight,” Brashear coach Jacob Bleything said. “The weather was with the pitchers. “Both teams pitched great tonight. I thought (Carson) Erwin pitched great for us. I couldn’t have asked more out of him.”
“There were some situational things on the second run. It didn’t wind up deciding the game,” Jacob Bleything said. “There wasn’t much you could do about the first run. We have some things we can clean up.”
“It was great to be out on a field. We haven’t been out on our field yet, even for practice,” Coach Bleything said. “This is the first time we have been on dirt all year long. We just played a great team. We have a lot to look forward to if we continue playing baseball like that.”
“They were putting pressure on us, threatening to score,” Scott Gaines said. “It was a quality ball game all the way around. All we can ask for is to take quality at bats. We extended an at bat. That allowed us to move a runner up to third. They overthrew and we scored the second run.
Cale Stoneburner worked the count and eventually pressured the Tiger defense with a sixth inning walk. “That was huge,” Scott Gaines said.
NS vs. Canton
The Raiders won its season opener against the Canton Tigers on Monday, March 21, 2022.
The seventh inning was the Raiders clinched a 4-2 victory.
In the bottom-of-the- sixth, NS trailed 2-1 when Stoneburner homered on a 2-1 count, scoring three runs.
Uhlmeyer also earned a homerun in the sixth.
Uhlmeyer was on the pitcher’s mound for North Shelby. He surrendered zero runs on two hits over five innings, striking out 11 and walking one.
Uhlmeyer, Stoneburner and Smith all had one hit in the game.