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Bulldogs have Cougars' number again

May 03, 2002|BY DAN KAUFFMAN

kauffman@herald-mail.com

SHENANDOAH JUNCTION, W.Va. - When No. 8 Martinsburg beat No. 1 Jefferson 10-0 on April 16, you could forgive those who thought the blowout was a fluke.

The Bulldogs, however, are far from a fluke. They proved it again on Thursday night in the Cougars' backyard.

Justin Walther's three-run homer to left field highlighted a four-run third inning, and Joey Yurish held Jefferson to three hits over the first six innings as Martinsburg sent another strong message with the sectional playoffs 11 days away, beating the Cougars, 7-4.

"Our guys come to play every time we play Jefferson," Bulldogs coach Ty Hart said. "I'm sure every team gets up to play them, and we play good."

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Trey Arvon led off the third with a single, and Brett Twigg doubled into the gap to bring Arvon in for a 1-0 Martinsburg lead.

Mike Ware reached base on a popup into the gusting wind that Cougars second baseman Brian McLaughlin couldn't handle. Yurish's sac bunt moved Twigg to third and Ware to second for Walther.

With the count 1-0, Walther barely missed on a Seth Osbourn fastball that sunk at the last instant. But on the very next pitch, Walther lined a fastball over the fence in left for a 4-0 lead.

"Justin's been struggling lately, but he made some adjustments in (batting practice) yesterday," Hart said. "He's got his confidence back."

Ware's RBI double made it 5-0 in the foruth, and Twigg, who took third on the double, scored on a wild pitch later in the inning. Ware's sacrifice fly in the sixth scored Blaine Durst for a 7-0 lead.

Jefferson's best chance to score in the first six innings came in the third, when with runners on first and third and two out, the Cougars tried a double steal of home, which backfired.

Yurish went 6 1/3 innings, allowing five hits and three runs - all in the seventh - while walking three and striking out four. Jefferson hit numerous line drives right at Martinsburg defenders.

"Seems like everything we hit went right at them," Jefferson coach John Lowery said. "I thought if we were going to get (Yurish), it would have to be early on. ... He got stronger in the middle innings."

Jefferson scored four in the seventh, but never got the tying run to the plate.

No. 8 Martinsburg 7

No. 1 Jefferson 4

Martinsburg 0042010-792

Jefferson 0000004-463

Yurish, Ware (7) and Twigg. Osbourn, Kozak (4), Fisher (6) and Noll. WP - Yurish. LP - Osbourn. HR - M: Walther (3rd, two on).

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