The West Virginia Power won a marathon game tonight, taking a 5-4 victory over the Lexington Legends in 14 innings. West Virginia entered the bottom of the 9th inning trailing by a run, but Rogelios Noris came through with a towering shot with two outs, sending the game in to extra innings, tied at 4-4. The score stayed the same until the 14th inning, when Dan Grovatt hit a bases loaded single, bringing home Noris for the winning run.
“He had a good pitch, I mean a curveball in there,” Grovatt said of the final at-bat. “I struck out on that pitch previously in the game, and I tried to stay short and stay through it. Fortunately I put a good swing on it.”
Tyler Waldron got the start tonight, but only lasted four innings, allowing three runs, all of which came in the third inning. Waldron was working in the 90-92 MPH range, and was getting hit hard in the third, giving up all four of his hits, all with two outs.
West Virginia had put a run on the board in the second when Cole White scored on a Chase Lyles single, one at-bat after White tripled. They gave Waldron some support in the bottom of the third when Mel Rojas Jr. hit a bomb down the right field line for a two run homer, tying the score at 3-3.
Waldron left after the fourth inning, and the bullpen went to work. Trent Stevenson came on, sporting an interesting mustache, and had his second strong outing in a row, allowing one run in four innings of relief, with three hits allowed, two walks, and one strikeout.
“I feel like I could have pounded the zone a little more, and attacked the zone a little more,” Stevenson said, “but other than that I feel like I made pitches when I had to, and when I got in to situations I needed to get out of I did.”
Stevenson did run in to a few jams. He put two on with one out in the fifth, but got an inning ending double play to escape the jam. In the eighth inning he allowed a one out single to Telvin Nash. Nash stole second base, then scored on a two out single by Emilio King, giving Lexington the lead. As for that mustache…
“I’ve been growing it out for a month, and just all the guys telling me to dye it, so had to do it,” Stevenson said. “Just having some fun with it.”
West Virginia was down to two strikes and two outs in the ninth when Rogelios Noris connected for his seventh homer of the year. That sent the game in to extra innings, where the West Virginia pitching staff continued an impressive run.
Jason Townsend came on in the ninth, and ended up pitching three innings. He allowed two hits and no walks, while striking out two. That brought on Porfirio Lopez, who also went three shutout innings. Lopez also allowed two hits, no walks, but struck out three.
The Power offense had a few chances in extra innings, but capitalized on their big opportunity in the 14th. Rogelios Noris lined a one out single off the third baseman, then moved to third on a Kevin Mort single. That brought up one of the hottest hitters on the team right now, Drew Maggi, who had a double and a single earlier in the game, and was robbed of another hit in the first when he lined one off the opposing pitcher’s chest. Maggi worked a 3-0 count, before Lexington intentionally put him on board. That set the stage for Grovatt, who connected with a single up the middle to win the game.
West Virginia took three of four games against Lexington in a series that featured three extra innings games and a brawl in game one.
“What a series,” Dan Grovatt said of the last four games. “I don’t know if it’s because we see each other a lot, it seems to always work out that way.”
“A lot of good, talented players on this team. We’re never dead. No matter how many we’re down, we’re never dead.”
West Virginia starts a three game series against Greensboro tomorrow, before heading on the road to take on Lexington again. I’ll be covering game one of the upcoming series, with Zack Von Rosenberg on the mound.
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