Derrick Webb, Staff Writer
CHILLICOTHE — This past spring, Brandon Barker wasn’t playing baseball like most of his teammates … and opponents for that matter.
Barker, who graduated in 2018 from Zane Trace, has had an abundance of time off and, while baseball hasn’t taken the forefront of his attention during that period, he’s getting back to where he once was on the diamond.
Saturday’s pitching gem proved that thoroughly as the 19-year-old right-hander tossed five innings of six-hit baseball, allowing two earned runs. That was more than good enough for Chillicothe Post 757 to hand Hillsboro Post 129 a 7-2 loss in the Jadwin Memorial Tournament.
“Brandon has that bulldog mentality. He didn’t throw this spring and he’s behind. When you’re not practicing, you lose some stuff,” Barr said. “But Brandon is a kid that we’re looking at … he threw really well today and that’s being on a 60-pitch count. We feel like right now, that’s where he’s at. But down the road, he’s going to be a competitor and put us in the position to win. He continues to get better and better.”
As do the Colts (6-8), who seem to be piecing things together midway through the summer.
While Barker kept Hillsboro’s offense at bay, Connor Mullins and Garrett Wilburn provided fireworks at the plate. Mullins was 2-for-4 with two doubles, two runs and three RBIs while Wilburn finished the game 3-for-3 with two doubles and two runs.
“[Mullins] and [Wilburn] are both just being picky and looking for good pitches,” Barr said. “That’s key. You can do everything right but if you’re swinging at bad pitches, you’re still not effective. They’re both seniors from good programs and they’re both disciplined at the plate. We’ve talked about that as a team. This team can hit but they have to be disciplined to do so.”
757 wasted no time getting on the board, scoring three runs in the top of the first inning.
Mullins reached on error to begin the game, Brayton Felger doubled and Chad Ison drew a walk to load the bases. That set the stage for Harley Patterson to log a sacrifice fly, Felger to score on a throwing error, and Sam Frazier to knock a run in with an RBI groundout.
Hillsboro scored a run each in the second and third frames, cutting the lead to 3-2. But the Colts answered in the top of the fourth with a two-run double via Mullins. Later, leading 5-2 in the sixth, Mullins knocked in another run and Ison tacked on an RBI single to produce the final.
Ison was 1-for-3 with a run and an RBI, Felger finished 1-for-3 with a double and a run, and Cole Ratcliff went 1-for-3 with a run.
After beating Hillsboro, 757 turned right back around and beat Harrison Yeager Post 199 later in the day … evening their record in the Jadwin Tournament to 2-2.
In that contest, Ison was the hero at the plate, hitting a three-run home run in the top of the fourth inning. Kody Haubeil was 1-for-3 with a double, a run and an RBI, and Mullins went 2-for-2 alongside a double and an RBI.
On the hill, Sam Walsh earned the win in an inning of relief work. Lucas Foglesong started the game, tossing four innings without allowing an earned run, and Patterson earned the save.
Post 757 is back in action Tuesday evening, playing on their “Southern Swing” in Garner, N.C..
“It’s hitting that we have to focus on … our pitching has been good and it’ll get better,” Barr said. “It’s a process. The summer has been tough with weather. Just getting guys to play will help. But our hitting … we can be good, we just haven’t displayed that at times.”
Waverly 142 splits a pair, moves to second day of Jadwin Tourney
CHILLICOTHE — One local team is moving on in Jadwin Memorial Tournament play.
Waverly Post 142 split a pair of games Saturday, falling to Toledo 533 before beating Greenville 140 at Chillicothe High School.
In a 7-3 loss to Toledo early in the day, the Shockers (7-5) pounded out six hits with Kannon Pack leading the way. Pack was 2-for-4 with an RBI while Ian Gillen went 1-for-3 with a double and a run.
On the mound, Weston Roop took the loss in five innings of relief work. Roop gave up four runs on four hits and struck out three hitters.
142 redeemed itself in the afternoon with a 7-0 win over Greenville, one that was spearheaded by a strong pitching effort from Shane Vulgamore, who went seven innings, allowing just one hit and whiffing 13.
“Shane Vulgamore was dealing today,” Post 142 coach Jonathan Teeters said. “The Vulgamore household has a lot to be proud of. He was outstanding today on the bump.”
Providing run support was Derek Eblin, who was 2-for-3 with two doubles and an RBI, as well as Roop, who was 1-for-4 with a double and two RBIs.
Waverly 142 plays again Sunday morning, taking on either Yeager 199 or Blissfield (Mich.) at 11:30 a.m. A win would catapult them into the championship, being played at