RIPLEY - A combined six errors in two games contributed to the Ripley Baseball team's losses last week in MSAC matchups with Cabell Midland and Winfield.
The Vikings (4-7) have struggled on the road (1-5) and the matchup with Cabell Midland (5-6) on Thursday looked like it would buck that trend in the early innings.
Ripley came out of the gate and plated two runs in the first and second frames.
Isaac Koontz took the hill for the Vikings and through four innings gave up five runs but only three were earned. Midland plated five runs in the fifth and took a 7-6 lead and Ripley's bats had no answer as the slim margin stood for the Knights.
The Vikings have struck out 41 times in the last 21 innings of play dating back to a loss to Meigs County Ohio on April 3.
Koontz struck out two and walked two in the game. Preston Baldwin relieved Koontz and threw an inning. He gave up two runs, one earned on three hits and walked one and struck out one. Easton Berry put in an inning of work on the hill and walked a batter and fanned one batter.
The Vikings had six hits in the game. Nathan Tucker and Jonny Stepp were each 1-for-4 with an RBI, Preston Baldwin went 1-for-2 with a double and an RBI, Isaac Koontz was 1-for-3 with an RBI and a walk, Dalton Wentz went 1-for-3 with an RBI, and jared Bumpus was 1-for-2 with two walks.
"We have been coming out strong with the bats in early innings and fading later in the game. We have to start plating more runs in late innings" said coach Casto.
On Friday, Ripley once again scored six runs in the first two innings versus Winfield and fell 10-7 to the Generals.
Christopher Jordan took the hill for Ripley and deserved a better fate than being saddled with the loss on this night. The frosh hurled three innings and surrendered only three hits and three runs (none were earned). He walked three and struck out four Generals. Easton Berry hurled two innings and gave up an earned run on three hits while notching two strikouts with his ever improving curve ball.
Jared Bumpus hurled two innings and may have experienced his toughest time on the mound so far this season in his young prep career. The frosh gave up six earned runs while walking three. It is worthy of noting the Bumpus has been the Vikings most consistent hurler up two this point and the lefty is developing quite nicely for Viking pitching coach Frankie Cummings.
Jordan was 1-for-5 at the plate, stole a base and scored a run, Nathan Tucker and Tyler Pittenger scored two runs and each hitter walked once, Preston Baldwin went 1-for-3 with a walk, Isaac Koontz scored a run and notched an RBICody Pittenger was 1-for3 with a double and an RBI, bumpus was 1-for-5 with two RBIs.
Page 2 of 2 - Ripley returns to action as they host South Charleston on Tuesday. It will be "50's Night" at Viking part as the Ripley High baseball program honors the 57-59 Ripley Baseball teams.