PHS holds off Patriots in 9-8 win

PARKERSBURG – Winning pitcher Anthony Kist pitched five solid innings and every Parkersburg batter had at least one hit here Thursday night in front of a big crowd at Hank Greenburg Field as the visiting Big Reds held on for a wild 9-8 victory against rival Parkersburg South.

PHS skipper Alan Burns’ squad led 9-2 going into the bottom of the sixth before the Patriots battled back to within a run, only to leave the bases loaded when Big Red Jeff Davis got a called third strike to end it.

Kist cruised through the first five innings, using only 75 pitches. Although the Big Reds led 2-0 after the top of the first thanks to runs from Lucas Goodwin and Logan Dudley via an RBI double by Damon Ribeiro and an RBI single by Levi Casto, the Patriots managed to tie the game in the home half of the frame.

Jacob Wilcox, who went 4 for 5 as the Patriots’ leadoff hitter, singled and scored on Tre Jackson’s RBI groundout while Jordan Braniff singled and came home on an RBI knock back up the box by Tyler Berry. After that, Kist settled into a groove before being removed in favor of Davis in the sixth after he allowed the first four Patriots to reach.

PHS, now 6-7 with a 1 p.m. Saturday twinbill up next at Warren, pushed across four runs in the fourth off losing hurler Clayton Cottrille. Davis had the big hit – a two-run stand up double down the line in left – while Cole Parker and Ribeiro, who went 3 for 4, also had runs-batted-in. The Big Reds got RBIs from Parker and Dudley in the fifth while Levi Casto singled and scored on a wild pitch to give the visitors what looked like a comfortable 9-2 cushion after the top of the sixth.

However, that lead quickly started to evaporate as Jackson got things going in the sixth with a leadoff single. Kist then issued consecutive free passes to Berry and Dylan Weaver before being lifted after Brad Brubaker had an RBI single to left.

Thanks to a PHS error on Brubaker’s hit, the Patriots managed to make it a 9-4 contest. After Wes Mitchem had an RBI groundout and Hunter Hamilton hit a sacrifice fly, the Patriots were back in it and trailed by just three.

In the home half of the seventh, Braniff started the rally by drawing a base on balls, but Davis followed with a pair of punchouts. After Weaver reached on an infield single, the Big Reds made three consecutive errors. Braniff scored on the first one and A.J. Easter drew a bases-loaded free pass to force in pinch-runner Dakota Robinson, but Davis got Wilcox on an up and outside corner called third strike to preserve the victory.

Dudley finished 3 for 5 and PHS courtesy runner Colby Bennett scored twice.

Parkersburg South, which dropped to 9-5, will look to get back into the win column starting at 1 p.m. today when the Patriots head to the St. Albans tournament.