Win tickets to see the smash hit musical Mamma Mia at the Roanoke Civic Center. Two winners will each receive four tickets!
Steven Floyd's single pushes the Highlanders into the semifinals to face Chilhowie.
Tuesday, May 28, 2013
If the pinch hitter doesn’t believe, who will?
Glenvar High School senior Steven Floyd had struggled with the bat most of the year. But when summoned to pinch hit with a man on in the bottom of the seventh inning of a tied Group A Region C Division 2 game, Floyd assured teammates in the Highlanders dugout there was no cause for concern.
“I was just saying that to keep people calm,” Floyd said. “But when my time came, I went through with it to make sure it happened.”
His single found the gap in left center as Tyler DeHart came in with the winning run in an 8-7 thriller that saw the lead change hands three times between the old Three Rivers District rivals.
After being the centerpiece of a home plate mob scene on the Highlanders diamond, Floyd talked about his struggles leading up to his regional heroics.
“I wasn’t getting around to the baseball quick enough sometimes then at other times, I just was not seeing it right,” he said. “I just made the adjustments I had to have to get that right there.”
Glenvar was where it expects to be every year, in the regional semifinals playing for a state berth. The Highlanders started out 2-7 but rounded into form at the right time to earn a shot at Chilhowie, a 7-2 winner over Giles, in Wednesday’s semifinal double-header at James River, game time 4:30 p.m. Glenvar has won three in a row and nine of its last 11.
At first glance, Floyd would not have seemed like an obvious choice for pinch hitting given his offensive travails this spring.
“But the last couple of days, he’s been hitting the ball really good,” Glenvar coach Billy Wells said. “I told him during the game to be ready to come up there in a clutch situation.”
Clutch it was, but no more so than what Josh Watts faced to open the seventh. With the Bobcats leading 7-6, Watts came up after going hitless in three previous at bats. Watts took Charlie Morris’ two-strike pitch and smoked an opposite field home run, the first of his varsity career, to knot things up.
It had been a wild game. The Bobcats (12-9) led 2-0 in the middle of the first. Glenvar answered with five runs in the bottom half to make it 5-2. Radford bounced back with two in the second and three more in the fourth to take a 7-5 lead. Zach Duncan’s run scoring single cut the Glenvar deficit to one run, which set the stage for the explosive seventh.
Relief pitching was a big part of the game for both teams. Morris entered in the first for struggling starter Drew Cox, who didn’t record an out. Cox, Radford’s No. 3 hitter, had a tough afternoon all the way around. He was hit by a Tyler Crockett pitch on his lead wrist with the bases loaded in the fourth. The run scored as part of the big inning, but Cox was unable to continue after running the bases.
Crockett, meanwhile, worked the last 5 1⁄ 3 innings for the win. He faced two batters over the minimum the last three frames. In addition, he went 3-for-4 with two runs scored. Wells had come with a quick hook for starter Kevin Steele.
Duncan singled in a run and walked one in. Watts had another RBI besides the solo poke in the seventh. Troy Mitchell had couple of hits as did Logan Waldron, batting eighth, who added three RBIs.
Radford 220 300 0 – 7 10 3
Glenvar 500 100 2 – 8 11 1
Cox, Morris (1), Phillips (7) and Marshall. Steele, Crockett (2) and DeHart. W – Crockett. L – Phillips. HR – Watts (G), 7th, none on.
Weather JournalStorm track isn't very snowy for us