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By Mitchell Broughton
A four hit, three run seventh inning helped tie up the semifinal series after the Bridgewater Reds shocked the top-seeded Broadway Bruins 4-2 last night.
Up until the seventh inning, Broadway ace and RCBL Pitcher of the Year Adam Riggleman was dominating on the mound. In his first six innings, Riggleman let up just two hits, no walks, and struck out twelve batters.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, Broadway was up 2-0. Mason Mitchell led off the inning with a home run that traveled into the corn crop behind center field. The next at bat, Reds’ first baseman Tyler Mahone took the first pitch over the right field fence to tie the game up. Back to back home runs in back to back pitches off of Riggleman. George Laase would single and Brett Tharp would come into run for him and stole second base. Jonathan Sexton singled the next at-bat, scoring Tharp and gave the Reds their first lead of the game. That half inning would ultimately be the decider, the Bruins had the opportunities with runners on base but the Bridgewater defense held their ground to secure the win and tie the series at one win a piece.
Bridgewater’s starting pitcher, Hunter Mohr, struggled to find a rhythm. Mohr only lasted a little over three innings before being replaced by shortstop Derrick Shifflett. Shifflett would go on to pitch the remainder of the game, striking out five, walking four, and giving up eight hits but only one run.
Broadway out-hit the Reds 13-7 but struggled to convert those hits and runners on base into runs. Over the entire game, the Bruins stranded 19 runners on base, easily half of those in scoring position.
Chase DeLauter finally received pitches to swing at, and in the top of the third opened up the game’s scoring with a solo shot that was still rising as it left Ruritan Park. DeLauter finished the game with three hits and was only walked once — something that hasn’t been the case in this year’s playoffs. Tyler Ault and Trent Abernathy also had three hits for the Bruins.
Game three of this series will be played tonight at JMU’s Eagle Field, this year's home of the Broadway Bruins. Certainly the Reds weren’t expecting to use Shifflett on the mound last night so it will be interesting to see who gets the start for them tonight.
FINAL: Bridgewater 4 Broadway 2. Win: Derrick Shifflett (4-1). Loss: Adam Riggleman (4-1).
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