Panthers sweep Pineville in doubleheader
Published 1:04 pm Wednesday, April 4, 2018
Pineville entered Tuesday’s doubleheader against Cumberland Gap with hopes of picking up both their second and third victories of the season. Their wishes would be denied as the Panthers swept the Mountain Lions two games to none.
Hitting was an issue for Pineville in both games with the team combining for four hits on the day. Cumberland Gap’s hot bats also created problems for the Lions with the Panthers totaling 13 hits between the two games.
Pitching was also a concern for Pineville with several batters being walked throughout the course of the day.
“If we’re not going to throw strikes, it’s going to be hard to compete. Everybody we play throws us strikes,” said Pineville coach Chris Murphy. “I think we might have five walks on the year, and for some reason we want to walk everybody or not throw strikes. Our biggest thing is we get behind. The pitching has to get better. I did think our fielding was a lot better tonight.
“Hitting, it’s hit or miss. It’s hot or cold. Sometimes we’re hitting the ball really good. Sometimes we can’t touch it, so we’ve got to get better with our hitting. The main thing is we’ve got to start pitching consistently. Our four guys we’ve got — Reese, Deon, Jonathan Simpson and Josh Holland — those are my four guys. We’re going to ride with them. We just got to get more consistency out of them.”
Game 1: Cumberland Gap 7, Pineville 1
The Panther used an explosive first inning to cruise to a 7-1 victory in the first game of the day.
Brennan Murphy paced the Panthers at the plate going 2-for-2 with two RBIs and a run. Darrin Robertson ended the game with one run on one hit. Michael Moyers earned the victory on the mound striking out three batters and not allowing a hit or run in his two innings.
For Pineville, it was Jonathan Simpson who led the stagnant Mountain Lion offense. He finished with one hit and one RBI. Timothy Gambrel and Damon Wilson also registered hits during the game. Reed Baker scored Pineville’s only run after reaching on a walk.
Reese Capps was credited with the loss after allowing seven hits and seven runs (five earned) during the game.
Cumberland Gap tallied five runs in the first thanks to Peyton Welch, Robertson, Brady Pearman, Micah Cannon and Murphy. The Panthers increased their lead to 6-0 in the bottom half of the second after an RBI single by Welch drove in Jeremiah Cannon.
A bases loaded walk brought in Moyers to balloon the Panther lead to 7-0 at the end of the third.
Pineville halted the shutout in the fifth and final inning. After reaching on a walk, Baker crossed home plate on the Simpson RBI to cut the final deficit to six runs.
Game 2: Cumberland Gap 11, Pineville 0
The second game of the evening wasn’t much different than the first. With Pineville’s continued struggles at the plate and on the mound, the Panthers scored runs in each inning until the game was called in the fourth with Cumberland Gap walking away with an 11-0 victory.
Peyton Welch led the Panthers at the plate tallying one run and three RBIs on three hits. Micah Cannon scored two runs on one hit. Holdin McDaniel paced the team in runs with three while reaching base twice on walks.
Jonathan Simpson tallied Pineville’s only hit of the game. Deon Coffman was credited with the loss on the mound after allowing seven runs and six hits in 3 1/3 innings.
Cumberland Gap jumped ahead 3-0 in the bottom half of the first. An RBI double by Michael Moyers gave the Panthers a 1-0 advantage. A two-run RBI single by Brady Pearman gave Cumberland Gap a three-run lead.
The Panthers’ lead grew to 4-0 in the second after McDaniel scored on a wild pitch. Runs from Cannon, Matthew Massengill and McDaniel in the third ballooned the Cumberland Gap lead to 7-0.
The Panthers ended the game in the fourth inning. With two outs on the board, a bases-loaded walk scored Cannon and increased the gap to 8-0. Ethan Ramsey was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to score Massengill. A two-run RBI double by Welch ended the game with Cumberland Gap walking away with an 11-run victory.
Pineville (1-5) returns to action at 5:30 p.m. on Monday when they travel to Williamsburg (5-2).
Cumberland Gap (11-5) will host Barbourville (3-3) at 5:30 p.m. on Thursday.
Reach Anthony Cloud at 606-302-9090 or on Twitter @AnthonyCloudMDN