April 27, 2014

BY JOHN D. HOMAN
Logan Media Services

CARTERVILLE – Freshman lefthander Joey Marciano pitched a one-hit shutout Saturday to lift the John A. Logan College baseball team to a doubleheader split with visiting Rend Lake. The Volunteers won the opener behind Marciano, 13-0, before falling apart in the nightcap, 16-6.

Marciano improves his personal record to 6-2 in the Great Rivers Athletic Conference, 8-2 overall this spring. The lone hit he allowed was an infield single off the bat of Alex Wittenauer.

“Joey has been the most consistent pitcher we’ve had all season, a true No. 1 starter,” said Vols head coach Jerry Halstead. “He got off to a bit of a shaky start today with his control, but then settled in and pitched very well.”

Marciano, who struck out four and walked four, was pleased with his effort.

“I was trying to find the strike zone the first two innings,” he said. “The problem was that I was flying open with my release point, but I finally got it straightened out in the third inning. I stayed more within myself. My slider was working well for me today.”

The Volunteers backed the freshman with 17 hits. Jake Carpenter led the way with four hits and three runs batted in, including a two-run homer to right in the third inning, his first roundtripper of the season.

Kyle Schneider followed with three hits, including a solo home in the second inning, also his first big fly of the spring.

Zach Ditto was 2-for-3 with a two-run double in the fourth and sacrifice fly in the fifth. Tanner Scott doubled in two runs in the fifth inning. Culver Plant had three singles and stole a base. Konner Lutz added a hit and sacrifice fly. John Tolliver had an RBI double in the fifth. Jamal Fletcher and Joba Ferrell added singles.

In Game 2, the Warriors took a 5-2 lead into the bottom of the sixth inning. Ferrell then doubled in two runs to cut the Vols’ deficit to one at 5-4.

In the bottom of the seventh, Logan tied the game at 5-5 when Scott singled, advanced to third on a two-base error by left fielder Will Fisher, and scored on a sacrifice fly by Plant.

The Vols had a chance to win the game when they loaded the bases in the ninth with one out. Schneider lined a pitch up the middle that was snagged by the shortstop, Wittnauer was positioned next to the second base bag with an extra infielder on the infield. After catching the liner, Wittnauer fired a strike to first base, catching Fletcher too far off the bag for a double play.

The Warriors proceeded to pound two Logan relievers, Tyler McGowan and Trey Waldrop, for 11 runs on 11 hits in the top of the 10th inning. Rend Lake was aided by two errors. Fisher drove in three runs in the inning. Darius Box drove in two. Jake Stewart, Dallas Adkins and Paul Knapp drove in one each.

Winning pitcher was Derek Flaugher in relief of starter, Cory Renois. McGowan took the loss in relief of starter, Ryan Dunne.

Logan finishes conference play 14-10 and is 22-20 overall. The Warriors close out the 2014 campaign at 8-16 in the league, 13-29 overall.

The Vols will host a quarterfinal round best-of-three series of the Region 24 tournament next Saturday beginning at noon. Their opponent was not yet known at press time.