Although the Eastern View baseball team has seven seniors on its roster this season, only two of them saw meaningful playing time for the Cyclones a year ago.
Facing the first of two showdowns over the next week with county rival Culpeper, those two veterans stepped up for Eastern View.
Hunter Lange went 3 for 4 with two RBI’s, and Daniel Jones allowed just two runs on five hits in 5 1/3 innings pitched as the Cyclones notched a 7-4 victory over the host Blue Devils on Friday night.
“They’re our senior leaders,” Eastern View coach Ray Tricarico said of Lange and Jones. “They’re setting a great example for the younger guys, and then that pushes those guys to step up and get a base hit, steal some bases and get us a couple runs.”
Lange wasted no time on Friday night showing his teammates how things are done.
After singling in his first at-bat, the Cyclones center fielder delivered a two-out, two-run single his next time up to give them a 3-0 lead in the top of the second inning.
Lange singled to left field in the fifth for his third hit of the game. After stealing third base, he came around to score on a throwing error by Culpeper catcher Ben Anderson to give Eastern View a 5-1 advantage.
“Hunter really swung the bat well for us,” Tricarico said. “He’s going to be a big key to whatever success we have this season from his spot at the top of the lineup.”
Lange’s offensive prowess helped provide a cushion for Jones to work with, but the right-hander didn’t need much of one. He only got into trouble once, giving up singles to Zach Gray and Jake Dudley in the bottom of the third. Gray wound up crossing the plate on a throwing error by Eastern View shortstop Peyton Folsom.
Only one of the two runs Jones allowed was earned. He struck out two and walked one, registering 10 ground-ball outs.
“Daniel is my workhorse,” Tricarico said. “We talked the last few days about if he was going to be ready to pitch tonight, after he started for us [Tuesday] against Fauquier. I don’t think he would’ve told me if he wasn’t 100 percent, because that’s how he is. He wants to be out there, and I trust him.”
Jones added a 1-for-3 performance at the plate to his mound heroics. Till Butler tallied an RBI on a fifth-inning groundout, and Cooper Thomas had an RBI single in the seventh for the Cyclones (1-1).
Culpeper (0-3) got a gritty performance from starting pitcher Eric Wilson. The junior righty turned in four innings, giving up five hits and three runs—none of which were earned. He struck out two and walked two.
“We know that Eric is going to throw strikes and put our defense in position to make plays behind him,” Culpeper coach Brandon Mack said. “We just have to make those plays. We had three errors, so once we start making routine plays we’ll be fine.”
Anderson went 2 for 3 with a run scored to pace the Blue Devils’ offense. Wilson, Gray, Dudley, Nate McMeans and Hunter Graham all contributed one hit each, with McMeans and Graham both delivering RBI’s for the Blue Devils.
R H E
Eastern View 0 3 0 0 3 0 1 — 7 8 2
Culpeper 0 0 1 0 0 2 1 — 4 7 3
DANIEL JONES, Cooper Thomas (6) and Till Butler. ERIC WILSON, Jake Dudley (5), Peyton Reingruber and Ben Anderson.