Colonial Heights, VA - The Tri-City Chili Peppers dominated the Martinsville Mustangs in the final matchup between the two teams this season, winning 13-2.
Connor Handy (University of New Orleans) started on the mound for the Chili Peppers. Despite only allowing one hit in the first inning, three pass balls brought in a run to put the Mustangs on the scoreboard. Ethan Iannuzzi (Randolph Macon College) hit his first home run of the season in the bottom of the inning to tie the game at one.
Handy pitched three up, three down in the second. Kyle Jenkins (Mars Hill) hit a single for the only Tri City hit of the second inning. This single and two walks loaded the bases, but the Chili Peppers were unable to take the lead.
Martinsville batted three up, three down again in the top of the third. Iannuzzi hit another home run in his at bat in the bottom of the inning. Virginia Tech's Cade Swisher followed this home run with a single. Hunter Gilliam (University of Kentucky) also hit a single in the third, which was followed by a walk that resulted in a pitching change for the Mustangs.
The new pitcher walked in a run, and a double by Greg Ryan of Longwood scored two more runs. VMI commit Clark Driscoll hit a single to score two runs for a 7-1 Chili Peppers lead. After making it all the way through their lineup, Iannuzzi came back up to bat for Tri City and hit a single to score yet another run.
The Mustangs continued to struggle, with only one hit in the fourth. The Chili Peppers offense also slowed down in the fourth inning, during which they batted three up, three down.
Pass balls continued to be a problem for Tri City in Wednesday's matchup. A pass ball scored a Mustangs player who walked in the top of the fifth inning. This was the only Martinsville run in the fifth, making the score 8-2.
The Mustangs pitcher had a tough time in the bottom of the inning with a reach on error followed by two walks. He was then replaced, but the new pitcher allowed a run to score with the first batter he faced for a 9-2 Chili Peppers lead.
Morehead State's Branden Blankenship took the hill in the sixth and allowed one hit but no runs. Tri City had no hits or runs in the sixth inning.
Connor Schumann (ODU) pitched three up, three down in the top of the seventh. Kasten Furr (University of New Orleans) had the only Chili Peppers hit of the seventh inning, and the team failed to advance their lead.
Tri City had another pitching change in the top of the eighth to Terrell Hudson (University of New Mexico), who pitched three up, three down. Three walks loaded the bases for the Chili Peppers in the eighth inning. A 420 foot grand slam by Jenkins, his first home run of the season, that exited the bat at 105 mph made the game 13-2.
Catawba Valley Community College's Troy Shepherd pitched the final inning. He allowed one hit, but a double play ended the game in a 13-2 Chili Peppers win.
The Chili Peppers will travel to Hampton tomorrow to face off against the Peninsula Pilots.
This is a live article directly following the completion of the game. Quotes to come