McClellan shuts out Rockets
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LITTLE ROCK — Junior right-hander Michael McClellan pitched a four-hit shutout as the Bryant Hornets built on their last-game success at the Arkansas/Louisiana Challenge with a 2-0 victory over the Little Rock Catholic Rockets at Lamar Porter Field Tuesday, March 2.
McClellan struck out five and walked just two in the rout-going performance. All four of the hits he allowed were singles.
The Hornet defense backed their hurler with a pair of double plays and committed just one error.
Bryant’s first twin-killing came in the opening inning after Catholic had put two runners aboard on a hit batsman and a walk.
In the second, a lead-off single was erased by the Hornets’ second DP.
Bryant took the lead in the top of the third. Tad Beene and Billy Landers led off the inning with singles, J.J. Yant walked and McClellan delivered a sacrifice fly.
After that Catholic’s Brett Hoffman and McClellan dueled. Hoffman, starting with McClellan’s sacrifice fly, retired nine in a row before a one-out error in the sixth allowed his counterpart to reach base. But he pitched around that.
McClellan, meanwhile, worked around a pair of singles and a walk in the bottom of the fourth, striking out Nick Turchi to leave the bases loaded. In the sixth, Scott Gallagher looped a single to right with one out but McClellan got Joe Rugger to ground into a force then got the final out on a comebacker.
The Rockets went down in order in the bottom of the sixth as the Hornets took a 1-0 lead into the final frame.
The got their hurler an insurance run in the top of the inning which Anthony Rose led off with his second hit of the game, a single to right. Brandon Fitts sacrificed him to second and he took third on a groundout by Dustin Morris. He scored when Beene’s grounder to short was kicked by Brian Edelman.
McClellan retired the first two he faced in the bottom of the inning then an error by Beene at short gave the Rockets some hope. But the big right-hander fanned a pinch-hitter to end the ballgame.
The win evened the Hornets’ record at 3-3 going into Thursday’s home game against the Rockets.