Jacks Run Home Winning Streak to Seven Games
Dustin Williams' RBI double in the eighth inning secured a 2-1 victory over the Marshals and pushed the Pump Jacks' lead in the playoff race to three games.
In baseball, it's never about how you start, but how you finish.
Right now, the East Texas Pump Jacks are in the midst of a very strong finish.
Dustin Williams drove in two runs in the late innings to turn a 1-0 deficit into a 2-1 win over the Texas Marshals Tuesday night. The victory was the Jacks' seventh in a row at Historic Driller Park and the ninth win their last 12 games overall.
The result also extended the Pump Jacks' lead over the Marshals and the Woodlands Strykers to three games in the race for the final playoff spot. With its recent surge, East Texas now trails the Acadiana Cane Cutters by only a game and a half in the battle for the third seed. The TCL's regular season concludes next Friday, August 8, and the postseason begins the next day.
John Jaeger pitched effectively into the eighth inning, allowing just one run in the third that gave Texas the lead. The Marshals had a chance for more, but heads-up defense by the Pump Jacks and some questionable baserunning by Texas led to an unconventional double play that quashed the rally.
A base hit, a sacrifice, and an RBI single scored the Marshals' run in the third. With James Sloan on first, Carson Shaddy laced a double to the right field corner. Chris Osborne's strong throw missed the cutoff man, so catcher Peter Miller scrambled for the loose ball while Sloan raced for home. Miller chased Sloan up the baseline and tagged him out, then alertly fired to Connor Hornsby at third to nail Shaddy as he attempted to poach an extra base.
The Pump Jacks evened the score in the sixth inning. Joe Moroney singled to left to lead off the frame. He took second on an errant pickoff attempt, and advanced to third base on Connor Huesers' groundout. After Miller was hit by a pitch to put runners at the corners, Williams ripped a base hit up the middle that scored Moroney to tie the game at 1-1.
Texas threatened in the eighth, forcing the Jacks to their bullpen. Jaeger opened the inning with a strikeout, but a walk put the potential go-ahead run on first. Head coach John Foster went to reliever Kyle Garvin, who retired the next batter before allowing a walk of his own. With two runners on, Garvin struck out Michael Hoard to stop the rally before it started.
The Jacks were more successful in the home half of the frame. Miller flared a two-out delivery down the right field line for a single, bringing Williams to the plate. The freshman first baseman rocked a 1-0 pitch to right, missing a home run by less than two feet. The drive bounced off the wall for a double, allowing Miller to score the go-ahead run.
Robbie Petty came on for a 1-2-3 ninth inning to earn his fourth save of the season, all of which have come in the last two weeks.
Garvin picked up the win in two-thirds of an inning of work. Jaeger did yeoman's work but didn't fare in the decision, scattering eight hits over 7.1 innings. He allowed one earned run, walking two and striking out six.
Williams led the Pump Jacks offense, going 2-for-4 with both RBI. Moroney reached base twice, by a hit and a walk.
The Pump Jacks close out their series with the Marshals on Wednesday at Driller Park. The game time is a special early start, at 6:05 p.m., to accommodate a special promotion, Balloons, Baseball & Root Beer. The Jacks are joining with the Kilgore Chamber of Commerce & CVB to celebrate the Great Texas Balloon Race.
Balloon pilots will be on hand to meet and sign autographs during the evening. Following the game at dusk, the pilots will perform a balloon glow in the park adjacent to Driller, while the Lions Club serves root beer floats. It's an exciting event for the Pump Jacks and the community, and one you don't want to miss.
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Texas Collegiate League Stories from August 1, 2014
- Win a Game-Worn Pump Jacks Jersey - East Texas PumpJacks
- Hallonquist Earns Pitcher of the Week Honors - East Texas PumpJacks
- Jacks Run Home Winning Streak to Seven Games - East Texas PumpJacks
- Marshals Win 4-2 on the Road over Cane Cutters - Texas Marshals
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