Weir High offense gives Kelly plenty of backup

GOING HOME — Weir High’s Elijah Gillette rounds third and scores against Union Local on Monday. (Photo by Joe Catullo)

WEIRTON — For a while Monday night, freshman Tyler Kelly looked as if he would put his name among some of the Weir High elite pitchers.

Union Local, though, finally got its bats going in the sixth inning and made a game of it before bowing, 7-4, to the Red Riders at Ed Bowman Field.

The hard-throwing righty really had a gem going through the first four innings, tossing a perfect game with seven strikeouts. He struck out the side in the top of the fifth inning.

“Their bats came alive there in the sixth but, before that, Tyler’s pitching performance was outstanding to that point,” said Red Rider coach Jason Angle, whose club improved its record to 9-10. “More importantly, though, was that our defensive effort was outstanding today. That was good baseball, a complete game and everyone picking each other up. That’s what you’re supposed to do, especially this time of the year.”

Kelly gave up five hits, while fanning 10 and walking one. The walk to center fielder Ayden Smolira with one out in the fifth broke up Kelly’s perfect game. Senior Nick Paul made an all-out diving catch on a liner to short left center field from Hunter McCort to preserve Kelly’s no-hit bid

The Jets’ left fielder, Josh Neidert, got the first hit, which was a solid line drive to right-center leading off the sixth inning. The Jets followed with four of the next five batters getting singles. By the time Kelly got back into the groove, the Jets (7-12) scored four runs, and he retired the last batter of the inning with a runner at third base.

Kelly got the Jets in order in the top of the seventh.

“Their pitcher pitched a good game,” Union Local coach Wade Smolira said. “He kept our hitters off balance the first five innings, and we had trouble finding the holes. We finally got to him but it was too late.”

By then, the Red Riders gave Kelly a 7-0 cushion to work with late in the game. They were able to get hits when they needed them, scoring three in the second inning, two in the third and two more insurance runs in the fifth. The Riders had seven hits in all.

Most of the damage was done by the bats of Elijah Gillette, Drew Curtis and Zac Wypasek, who each had two hits. Gillette and Curtis drove home two runs apiece. Brodie McUmar and Wypasek each had an RBI.

McCort was the starting and losing pitcher. He was followed on the mound by Cody Morrison in the fourth inning. and Kolby Smolira relieved him in the sixth.

UP NEXT

Both teams square off again on Wednesday at Union Local.

Weir High 7, Union Local 4

Union Local 0-0-0 0-0-4 0 — 4-5-2

Weir High 0-3-2 0-2-0 x — 7-7-0

UNION LOCAL (7-12): McCort (lp, 3IP, 1K, 4BB), Morrison (4th, 2IP, 2K, 2BB), K. Smolira (1IP, 2K, 0BB) and Koscoe.

WEIR HIGH (9-10): Kelly (wp, CG, 10K, 2BB) and McUmar.

TWO OR MORE HITS: UL (none); Weir High (E. Gillette, Curtis, Wypasek, 2 each). DOUBLES: UL (none); Weir High (Curtis, Wypasek). TRIPLES; (none). HOME RUNS: (none). RBIs: UL (Morrison, Merritt, A. Smolira, McCort); Weir High (E. Gillette 2, Curtis 2, Wypasek, McUmar).

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