WINCHESTER—The Culpeper baseball team rode a dominating performance by starting pitcher Kyle McMeans and a balanced offensive attack to an easy 8-0 Class 4 Northwestern District victory over Handley Friday night.
McMeans went 6 2/3 innings for the Blue Devils (3-2 overall, 2-2 district), allowing just four hits while striking out 12 Judges and walking two. The senior right-hander threw 111 pitches—79 for strikes—on the way to evening his record at 1-1 on the season.
Culpeper’s offense gave McMeans plenty of help, banging out nine hits in the game.
Catcher Chad McClanahan went 2 for 4 with 3 RBIs. His first-inning single drove in Mason Sawyers to give the Blue Devils an early 1-0 lead, and he added another in the fourth that scored Dominic Pancione and Harry Bradshaw to extend the visitors’ advantage to 4-0.
Bradshaw also collected two hits, finishing 2 for 3 with an RBI.
Pancione, McMeans, Jasper Faulk and Blake Bailey accounted for Culpeper’s four doubles in the contest, with Bailey’s fourth-inning two-bagger plating Faulk.
Caleb Kitis also recorded a hit and an RBI for the Blue Devils, who won their second in a row following a two-game losing streak. They’ll attempt to avenge one of those two setbacks when they visit Kettle Run Tuesday evening.
Freshman Kaplan Ambrose accounted for half of Handley’s hits, going 2 for 4 with a pair of singles. The Judges (2-4, 0-4) also got singles from Griffin Hott and Austin Smith.
Hott started on the mound for Handley, allowing eight hits and six runs (five earned) while walking one and striking out five over 5 2/3 innings of work. Smith went the final 1 1/3, surrendering a hit and two unearned runs and walking one.
CULPEPER 1 0 0 1 2 3 1—8 9 2
HANDLEY 0 0 0 0 0 0 0—0 4 4
KYLE MCMEANS, Mason Sawyers (7) and Chad McClanahan. GRIFFIN HOTT, Austin Smith (6) and Josh Stickles.
Aby Brown pitched a complete-game shutout and hit a home run to lead the Blue Devils to their first win of the year.
Brown scattered five hits over five innings, walking two and striking out seven. Her homer was a two-run shot to center field in the second, when the visitors pushed across eight runs to take a commanding 9-0 lead.
The sophomore added an RBI single in the fourth, finishing the night 2 for 3 with 3 RBIs, a walk and a pair of runs scored.
A quartet of freshmen also had big days at the plate for Culpeper (1-4, 1-3). Catcher Susan Ishmael went 2 for 5 with a home run, a double, 4 RBIs and two runs scored; center fielder Shelby Wood was 2 for 4 with a pair of RBIs and a run scored; shortstop Theresa Breckley finished 2 for 4 with three runs scored and third baseman Brooke House went 3 for 3 with a double, a triple, an RBI, a walk and two runs scored.
Senior second baseman Alysse Ragle added a 2-for-3 performance with a double, a walk and a pair of runs scored.
The Blue Devils will return to the diamond with another district matchup at Kettle Run Tuesday.
Sara Blowers, Laura Hogan, Talley Sublett, Taylor Cannon and Jessica Krumpsky all reached the hit column for the Judges (1-4, 0-4), with Blowers smacking a fifth-inning double.
Starter Jenna Shull went three innings for Handley, yielding 15 runs (eight earned) on 11 hits and registering five walks and four strikeouts. Keegan Hendrix allowed three hits and two runs while walking one and striking out four over the final two frames.
CULPEPER 1 8 0 8 0—17 14 0
HANDLEY 0 0 0 0 0—0 5 3
ABY BROWN and Susan Ishmael. JENNA SHULL, Keegan Hendrix (4) and Laura Hogan, Haley Gaudet.