St. Albans couldn’t take advantage of Huntington’s generosity.
The Highlanders, on the other hand, weren’t as compliant.
Huntington scored four runs in the first inning with the help of two errors and a walk to strike an early blow against Class AAA Region 4 rival St. Albans in a 7-5 victory on Tuesday night at Loftis Field.
“Right now, we find ways to lose games,” St. Albans coach Rick Whitman said. “It’s as simple as that. There were points in that game, if we make plays ...
“First inning, we let a ground ball go through our shortstop’s legs. We can’t stay out of the big inning because we don’t make enough plays. Our pitching isn’t dominant where we can strike guys out, so we have to make plays.”
Coach Danny Harbert’s Highlanders (7-2) tried to return the favor in the bottom of the first when pitcher Riley Aulick began his night with 11 consecutive balls and a hit batsman. However, a St. Albans baserunning blunder and two flyouts to the warning track ended the threat.
The Red Dragons finished with four errors and gave up run-scoring singles to No. 7 hitter Chase Ashworth and No. 8 hitter Wilson Ey — who started at catcher in place of regular starter Ben Fulks.
Fulks was given the night off.
Ey responded with a single and an RBI.
As for Aulick, he settled in after a 23-pitch first inning. He threw a combined 18 pitches in the second and third innings.
“He settled down and started throwing strikes,” Harbert said.
Theodos, on the other hand, came into the game with a 2.33 earned run average but surrendered three earned runs in the first inning on 34 pitches and finished with 84 pitches thrown before leaving at the end of the third inning.
“We had their pitchers on the hook a couple times and we didn’t find a way to have a big inning, for whatever reason,” Whitman said. “Right now, St. Albans is fighting St. Albans.”
Bobby Grishaber had two hits for the Red Dragons and Theodos and Mitchel Laton drove in runs.
St. Albans had run in the fourth and two runs each in the fifth and sixth. In the seventh, Huntington ace Stephen Holland came in and struck out the side to end it for the Highlanders.