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Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
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May 18, 2000     Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
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May 18, 2000
 

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Madison is straight for- you are playing is on it has just lost a mind- and you are the state. of them. will treble.And will be all the easier. Jefferson faced already a 2-1 loser to in the first game of AAA sectional tourna- got in front by two first-in- when Josh Green, Craig Rhodes gave the sinking feeling Season's end was all too Thursday, May 18, 2000 protected his lead nine-strikeout per- led the Cougars to a not an easy night for he never allowed the even. the sixth and sev- that Rhodes actually Eagles in 1-2-3 order. Hedgesville put the Jefferson caught it part. There were no defensive plays, just play from Smith, Jeff and Brandon Conway. helped the Eagles in the first, two Chxis Brooks Conway I~ob Madison Central York (Pa.) )m Sager Field as both games of a the 10-run rule. its regular season at displayed power in displayed a goodly roster in the second in the opener was mercy rule when lifted his second of the game toward the Ltcap ended at 13-3 scored two runs the sixth inning. improved his to 4-0 in the first aced three hits and near-flawless field- L's fielders were alert 'e because Lipscomb person, while fan- (a three-run boosted Jefferson's 1~9-nd homer was the inning on either eased Jefferson )Udoun Valley at ually known as y. a Precarious one-run Jefferson's inning was fu- four Viking er- run all over With a one-run lead. had already been pitches and two SCored on pitches Pp. t0-2, the Cougars pitches. innings were )ng wind gusts swirls of in- ' 1 P ayers faces and three advertising pole, sending the infield and In the shallow had mostly Jefferson, ahead more in the second, two of the three walks he issued in the next two in- nings, and then two more in the game's critical inning--- the fifth. After Green, who was the non- pareil leadoff man when he reached base on all four trips to the plate, walked to open the Jefferson first, the Cougars placed an addi- tional burden on the Hedgesville minds by producing two quick- strike runs. Smith legged out a triple to the fence in left as Green scored the game's first run. Rhodes lined to center, giving himself a 2-0 lead as Smith romped home on the sacri- rice fly. Hedgesville got three of its five hits in the second when an infield ground single finally plated Nicky Brown. The hardpan infield helped Jefferson answer with four game- deciding runs in its half of the third. Green kangarooed a grounder over the third baseman's head. Af- ter Chris Brooks walked, Smith sacrificed both runners along a base. After Rhodes popped out, Sam Walls' grounder quickly bounced beyond the shortstop's grasp. Conway then threaded a grounder through the middle, boosting Jefferson's lead to 5-1. Jimmy Rhodes Josh Green crowning blow in a four-hit, six-run inning that quickly ended things as Rhodes trotted home behind Chris Brooks, who was on base for the fourth consecutive time. Using up only 14 outs, Jefferson sprayed 10 hits over and out of Sager Field. Rhodes' two homers were the longest of the extra base hits, but Josh Green had a triple and Bran- don Ballenger and JeffWratchford doubles. There were 19 Jefferson base runners. Only 31 batters were needed to get that many runners aboard. Brooks scored three times. Green, Craig Smith, Sam Walls, Brandon Conway, and Wratchford all reached base twice, while Rhodes was aboard three times. Brad Webb was the starting pitcher in the second game. He left in the third inning after two straight walks. His replacement, Ballenger, then went 3 2/3 innings and doled out just two singles while walking three Jefferson again saturated the base paths with runner after run- only 3-2, batted in the fifth. Loudoun Valley only had to field one infield grounder in the first four innings or 12 outs. In the fateful fifth, the infield grounders to the shortstop came in a torrent--- and he booted all three of them. Sam Walls had the only hit in a seven-run inning. It was a single that drove in a run. Of the 10 runs Jefferson man- aged, only four scored on RBIs by a batter. Craig Smith had a triple and scored on a wild pitch in the first. Larnie Vickers walked and eventually scored on a wild pitch in the third. And Walls walked and scored on Brandon Conway's single in the fourth. Jimmy Rhodes (8-0) hadn't had an easy inning until the fifth against the Viking batting order. Ethan Osbourn threw out a run- ner wandering off second who had forgotten the count to end a two- runner first f SPIRIT OF JEFFERSON - Farmer's ADVOCATE It was 6-1 when Larnie Vickers followed Conway's lead and singled on the ground to center. The final Hedgesville push came in the fifth when Tony Smallwood rammed a double to left, Matt Stickel walked, and J.D. Slough singled to center to load the Eagle bases with no outs. Rhodes snapped the Eagle wings by fanning Matt Schoppert, Brown, and Brandon Burkhart in order. There was a run scored on Donell Lee's only mistake of a near-flawless catching perfor- mance . . . a passed ball during Schoppert's at-bat. Four hits, some inordinately poor base running, and Smith's second RBI gave Jefferson its sev- enth run in the sixth. Rhodes owned the last two in- nings, improving to 9-0 on the sea- son. And the Cougars eliminated Hedgesville. By Bob Madison Buckhannon is the defending Class AAA regional champion. But there are few people outside of Upshur County who believe the Buccaneers can duplicate last year's stunning win in the boys track meet that starts at 10 a.m. this morning at Cobourn Field in Sam Walls Danielle Scott Craig Smith net. As in the first game, there were 19 Cougar base runners. Nine hits, a steady stream of stolen bases, and pitches that eluded the Central York catcher kept the lights blinking on the Jefferson side of the scoreboard. Jefferson pinch hitters paraded to the plate in the fifth and sixth innings. With the score 11-3, Donell Lee and Kyle Wilt were perched on second and third when the Central York pitcher uncorked a wild pitch. Lee scored easily and when the catcher fired wildy back to the pitcher covering the plate, Wilt scored from second base to push the game-ending lead to 10 runs. Conway and Smith had two hits, while Smith reached base three times, Conway, Rhodes, Larnie Vickers, and Donnie Dunn all reached twice. Smith scored three of the 13 runs Central York was back on the highway at a decent hour, hope- fully headed in the right direction. And Jefferson readied for the sec- tional tournament. Carleton Wilcox (above), Malika Wilcox, and JanelIe Bradley (near right) are three Jefferson sprinter Two hits had Vikings on second and third in the next inning. Rhodes fanned a hitter and es- caped unscored on when Smith fielded a sharply hit grounder for the third out. After only one Loudoun Valley hit in the third, Rhodes lost his shutout in the fourth as he walked two after a double. In the fifth, Jefferson found the Valley shortstop and continued to take advantage of the never-end- ing stream of wild pitches it saw. Walks, errors, and wild pitches nearly accounted for all seven runs. Rhodes was much more effective in his last three innigs, facing only the minimum of nine batters and getting four of his eight strikeouts as the game wound to an end Years from now, the wind's force and the retrieving of the heavy signs from leftfield by Donnie Dunn, Tim Sechler, and umpire Dave Boyd might be the most re- membered scenes from an eight- run Jefferson win. By Bob Madison Defending its regional title won't be any easy task for Jefferson's girls today at Cobourn Field in Martinsburg. Even with potential race win- ners in Kris Morris (100), Jennifer Boyer (100 hurdles and 300 hurdles), the 4x100 relay team, the 4x200 relay team, and the shuttle hurdles relay unit Jefferson will need points from everywhere there is a field event or distance race to hold off the stern challenge of Hampshire Hampshire took four girls to Charleston for the Gazette Relays. Those four earned 76 points to fin- ish a close second in the meet to Capital's 86 points. There were 17 schools compet- ing in that meet, considered the state's best on a yearly basis. The Lady Trojans have the Davis sisters, Susan and Jennifer, sprinter-pole vaulter Lindsay Stewart and weight thrower Ashley McCauley. Martinsburg. Jefferson, Hedgesville, Hamp- shire and Fairmont Senior all have reason to believe Buckhannon can't travel over three hours and still catch lightning in a bottle a second successive year. Today qualifies runners and field event athletes for next weekend's state meet at Laidley Field in Charleston. The first four finishers in each running event (relays included) and all the field events will qualify for the state meet. Also, any run- ner, relay, or field event performer who reaches a precribed standard but doesn't finish in the top four will also qualify for the state meet. This has traditionally been a two-team struggle for regional supremecy until Buckhannon poked its head into the usual Jefferson-Hedgesville logjam at the top. There are 12 schools scheduled to appear in this meet But few have any chance to win the team trophy. Even with the miniscule chances of the likes of Preston Co Lewis Co Philip Barbour, Musselman, Keyser, Robert C. Byrd, and Martinsburg, any one of those teams could produce an indi- vidual or two who could effect the team standings because of a high finish in an event where vital points are needed by one of the fa- vorites. Musselman has points in dis- tance events, Keyser usually has a distance runner or two and Martinsburg has people who can place third or fourth in strategic places. Hampshire probably lacks the depth to win the meet, but with Bryan Wright in the long jump and Susan Davis won the 3,200 in 11:23.20 and won the 1,600 in 5:19.56. She was second in the 800 meters giving her the favorite's mantle in all three distance races today. Jennifer Davis was second in the 3,200, was fourth in the 800, fifth in the 400 with a time of one- minute, and cleared 4-feet-10 in the high jump Stewart pole vaulted 8-feet which is a foot-and-a-half better than the vaulters have done in this area. She had a long jump of 16-feet- ll-inches, which also betters any- thing done here, ran the 100 in 12.74 and the 200 in 26.28. Stewart could win four events today and is very likely to win at least three and be no worse than second in the other McCauley threw the discus 104- feet-eight-inches. Four athletes could do enough first-place damage to win the meet for Hampshire. 11 Chuck Braithwaite in the high jump the Trojans are going to snare valuable points. Braithwaite has a region-best 6-feet-4-inches in the high jump. Hedgesville has overall strength in the field events where the oft-injured Luca DeLuca has the season's best long jump. The Eagles need three of the first four places in the pole vault, two of the first three spots in the discus, and two of the three best jumps in the long jump to overcome a general dearth of sprinters and no prospective wins in any relay event. Jefferson has a few of the pre- meet favorites that include Carleton Wilcox (100 and 200), and both the 4x100 and 4x200 relays. Distance runner Jeff Gessler may keep improving to the point where he wins another 3,200- meters, but he isn't the favorite. Should the Cougars get the throwing bests from Dustin House- holder or Jermar Togans it would be enough to parlay with its points in the running events to win an- other region title. The long jump has potential for Jefferson points and Andre McDonald could possibly get points in the high jump. But none of the sprinters can falter or Jefferson will fail to win this meet for a second successive year. Casey Brown could be Jefferson's most valuable runner should he find ways to finish at least second in both the 800 and 1,600 A Jefferson win will probably be by 15 points or less and the last two events---where the Cougars don't have many points--- will see them hanging on if they have a lead. Jefferson counters with Morns, Malika Wilcox, and Danielle Scott in the 100, Scott and Jennifer Bra- dley in the 200, Alia Ford in the 400, Jiketta Underwood and Leslie Lawson in the distances, as well as some scoring possibilities in the field events. Scott can't jump 16-feet-ll, but could finish second to Stewart if the Hampshire athlete duplicates her Gazette leap. Patricia Willauer has done 6- feet-6 in the pole vault and needs to supply points there. Marquita Smith needs a few points in the shot put and Sheron Yates might place in the top six for valuable points. Jefferson needs to get points in all the relays! The relays hold the key to keep- ing Hampshire off the regional throne. Jefferson vitally needs to win the 4x100 and the 4x200, finish no worse than third in the shuttle hurdles, and get what they can from finishes in the 4x400 and 4x800. Hampshire has four athletes that will not falter. The last event of the day---the 4x400 relay---could find Jefferson and Hampshire almost dead even. Every point---even from fifth and sixth places---should mean something in this meet today.