Blue Flame take region series over Westside

By Bru Nimmons
Staff Reporter

PICKENS — A dominant day on the mound gave the Pickens Blue Flame their first region series win on the season on Friday as they took down Westside, 5-0.

Senior pitcher and Coker University commit Ryan Ford got the start for the Blue Flame and took down the Rams with ease, surrendering just two hits and adding eight strikeouts in five innings.

Even when Ford was taken out of the game after hurling a gem, the Blue Flame didn’t miss a step as Aidan Stewart closed out the rest of the game without surrendering a hit to the Rams.

Stewart proved to be too hard to handle for the Rams all week, with a win on Monday and the savc

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on Friday.

While getting a great day on the mound was essential to the Blue Flame effort, the win was made possible by the Pickens bats getting hot early.

C.J. Martin led the Flame off with a walk, and an error by the Rams shortstop allowed Kase Lewis to reach first base. With those two on base, Cooper O’Sullivan wasted no time bringing them home on a double to give Pickens a 2-0 lead.

Westside pitcher Elijah Grant settled down from there, striking out three straight Blue Flame batters to escape the inning.

A quick three-up, three-down inning by Ford put the Blue Flame right back in the batter’s box, and once again they were able to get on the scoreboard.

Tanner Tinsley picked up his first hit of the night and was quickly moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt by Brody Miller. Then, a Westside error not only allowed Tinsley to score, but also gave Martin a trip home as he rounded the bases in his second at-bat to bump the Pickens lead to 4-0.

Both offenses stalled out the rest of the way, with the lone exception coming in the sixth inning as Tinsley came to bat for the third time. For the second time on the night, Tinsley was able to get ahold of one of Grant’s pitches, picking up a hit and allowing eighth-grader Ayden Beeco to come home and score to give the Blue Flame the 5-0 advantage.

With the win over Westside, the Blue Flame turned their sights to region foe Walhalla. In game 1 of the series on Monday night, the Blue Flame fell 7-3 to drop to 4-2 on the season.


Pickens 5, Westside 0

WHS 000 000 0 0 2 4

PHS 220 001 X 5 5 0


WP: Ford 5 IP, 2H, 3BB, 8K

LP: Grant 6 IP, 5H, 5R, 2BB, 8K

PHS: O’Sullivan 3-3, 2 RBI, 2B; Tinsley 2-3, RBI, R.

WHS: Clark 1-3, 2B; Brownell 1-2, BB.