Hornets take sixth win in seven games in Florida behind Rutherford

Photos courtesy of JAnn Boyd Lessenberry

TAMPA, Fla. — The Bryant Hornets’ pitching continued to shackle the opposition at the Tampa[more] Bay High School Spring Training event on Friday in a 7-1 win over the Poly Prep County Day High School of Brooklyn, N.Y.

Nate Rutherford (Photos courtesy of JAnn Boyd Lessenberry)

It was Bryant’s sixth win in seven games at Walter Fuller baseball complex and second over Poly Prep. They were set to close out their stay in Florida against the Plum Borough Senior High Mustangs of Pittsburgh, Pa., later today.

Senior right-hander Nate Rutherford scattered seven hits in his route-going effort against Poly Prep. He walked just one and fanned three while throwing just 80 pitches. The lone run for the New York team came in the bottom of the fourth after the Hornets had built a 4-0 lead.

At the plate, the Hornets, now 12-5 on the season, took advantage of five walks and an error with six hits from six different players, Tyler Green, Trevor Ezell, Marcus Wilson, Harrison Dale, Ty Harris and Trey Breeding. Dale drove in two runs. Wilson, Breeding, Hayden Lessenberry and Hayden Daniel drove in one apiece.

Tyler Green (Photos courtesy of JAnn Boyd Lessenberry)

Rutherford only allowed a scratch hit on the infield over the first three innings and his teammates gave him a 3-0 lead in the top of the third. A walk to Korey Thompson and a bunt single by Green set the table. Ezell sacrificed the runners to second and third then Lessenberry walked to load the bases for Wilson who picked up an RBI on a ground out to second. Dale then cracked a base hit through the left side to chase home Green and Lessenberry.

After Rutherford eased through the bottom of the inning, the Hornets tacked on. Breeding walked and courtesy runner Austin Caldwell advanced to second when Green was struck by a pitch. A walk to Ezell loaded the bases and when Lessenberry popped out to the Blue Devils’ second baseman in short right field. Caldwell tagged up and scored to make it 4-0.

Poly Prep strung together three one-out singles in the bottom of the fourth to produced its run. A walk loaded the bases but a fly to Wilson in shallow left produced the second out then Rutherford picked the runner off third to end the inning.

He picked off another runner in the sixth when the Blue Devils managed two hits.

Bryant put the game on ice with a three-run seventh. Singles by Ezell and Wilson put runners at the corners. Dale was hit by a pitch to load the bases, then Ezell scored on a passed ball. Daniel produced a run with a sacrifice fly and, after Harris was struck by a delivery, Breeding lined a single to right to make it 7-1.

Poly Prep managed a two-out double in the bottom of the inning but Rutherford got the final out on a grounder to Ezell at short.

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