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McDade leads Pioneers to 13-2 win over Bluefield State

Jarel McDade went 2-for-2 with 4 runs scored and a home run in Tusculum's 13-2 win over Bluefield State (photos by Chris Lenker)
Jarel McDade went 2-for-2 with 4 runs scored and a home run in Tusculum's 13-2 win over Bluefield State (photos by Chris Lenker)

GREENEVILLE, Tenn. --- Jarel McDade went 2-for-2 with four runs scored and a home run to lead the Tusculum baseball team to a 13-2 win over Bluefield State Wednesday afternoon at Pioneer Park.

McDade reached base in all four of his plate appearances including his team-leading seventh home run of the season as the Pioneers (21-20) have won three of its last four games.  McDade also recorded a pair of stolen bases in the win.

Tusculum will return to South Atlantic Conference play this weekend for a three-game series at Coker beginning with Friday's opener at 3 p.m.

The Pioneers finished the game with 11 hits, seven walks and took advantage of four fielding errors by the Big Blues (12-15).  Daulton Martin recorded his team-leading 14th and 15th doubles of the season, while Nate Montgomery went 3-for-4 with two runs scored. Colby Skeen added a pair of hits to go along with his game-high three RBI.

Bluefield State scored the first run of the game as Drew Angelo reached on a throwing error and later scored on Tanner Brandon's two-out double to take a 1-0 lead.  The Pioneers answered quickly with a run in the bottom of the first as McDade was hit by a pitch, moved to second in Montgomery's infield single and scored on a Skeen RBI hit.

Tusculum took its first lead of the day with a three-run third inning thanks to a Martin RBI double and a RBI ground out from Skeen as the Pioneers led 4-1.

The Big Blues trimmed the deficit to 4-2 when Tanner Ray and Drew D'Angelo led off the fifth with back-to-back singles against TC starter Kent NoeColin Johnston took over as Peyton Durham bunted the runners into scoring position and Logan Wriston reached on a throwing error to bring home Ray.  With runners on the corners and one out, Johnston got out of the jam with a double play.

Tusculum answered with two runs in the bottom of the fifth as McDade led off with a solo home run.  Montgomery followed with a single and Skeen walked to put two on the bases.  Finchum put down a bunt to move the runners up and Bradley Evans brought home Montgomery with his ground out.

Tusculum put the game away with five runs in the sixth inning and two more in the seventh.  McDade and Skeen tallied RBI singles, while the Pioneers used a pair of BSC errors to blow the game open.

Johnston (3-1) picked up the victory in relief, pitching three shutout innings, allowed one hit, one walk and a strikeout.  Harbor Jefferson recorded two strikeouts as he pitched in the eighth inning and Leurys Diaz pitched a perfect ninth frame with two strikeouts.

For Martin, he extends his school record on-base streak to 53 consecutive games dating back to last year.

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