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Cyclones fall to Blue Devils in a nail biter

BY NIC MILLER
STAR CORRESPONDENT

After a great week of baseball from the Elizabethton Cyclones last week, there was more excitement to be had on the diamond this week starting on Monday night when the Unicoi County Blue Devils would visit Northeast Community Credit Union Ballpark to take on the home town Cyclones.

Coming into the early week contest, both of these two teams were undefeated in terms of conference play, but by the end of the night only one would keep a zero in the loss column.

The Blue Devils struck early as in the top of the first inning, Valentin Batrez would send a stinger down the first base line for an RBI triple to give Unicoi the 1-0 advantage to start things off.

And despite many close calls by both teams in the following few innings, the score would not change again until the top half of the fifth inning when the Blue Devils added one more to their tally with a Lucas Slagle groundout that would bring home a runner from third base, making it a 2-0 ball game midway through five.

But the Cyclones answered back in their half of the inning when a Cade Russell bunt would result in an errant throw through the infield to bring home a runner in the form of Elijah Birdsong to bring things within one score 2-1.

And while they would score the run, the Cyclones would sacrifice two outs as both Ashton Wilson and Russell would be gunned down trying to take home and third respectively.

Just as it had happened to the Devils in the bottom of the fifth, the top of the sixth saw a similar situation for the Cyclones as a Unicoi bunt would result in a wild throw to bring home another run for the Blue Devils. And it didn’t stop there, as another error would bring home another for the visitors, increasing their advantage to 4-1.

Elizabethton bounced back once again in the bottom of the sixth when Zac Workman hit a ground ball that rolled just past the shortstop’s glove, bringing home Bryson Rollins to reduce the deficit to 4-2 heading into the final two frames.

And that would mark the end of scoring for both squads, as a seventh-inning rally for the Cyclones would be halted, leaving the Blue Devils victorious by a score of 4-2.

The Cyclones will be back at home one more time this week taking on the David Crockett Pioneers Friday at 7 p.m.