The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

College Sports

June 5, 2014

Streaking Miners travel to take on Butler tonight

Coaches are never completely happy. So it comes as no surprise that despite his team scoring 17 runs on 14 hits, two pitchers combining on a two-hitter and the defense committing just one error, West Virginia Miners manager Tim Epling found something he didn’t like.

“I was disappointed in our baserunning,” Epling said. “I thought there were two or three times that we ran when we shouldn’t have. We’ve got to do a better job of reading balls that are hit, or when guys make bad throws in the infield or make good ones.”

Epling said that would be a focal point at practice Wednesday before the team hit the road for a four-game trip that starts today against the Butler BlueSox. First pitch from Kelly Automotive Park will be 6:35 p.m.

West Virginia (3-3) got off to a slow start, with three straight losses that included the first two of the season to the BlueSox. The Miners return to Butler, this time riding a three-game winning streak.

Andrew Bramley (0-1) will get his second crack at Butler, which won four straight after dropping its opener at Lorain County. Bramley pitched well in last week’s season opener but lost 2-1 to the Sox. The right-hander from Murray State allowed only three hits and walked two while striking out seven over six innings, but he got no backing from an offense that was limited to five hits.

That was theme for the Miners in their first three games, when they combined for four runs and 14 hits. They finally busted out with Tuesday’s 17-0 win over the Richmond RiverRats.

Pitching, meanwhile, continues to be a strength for the Miners under Epling. Going into Wednesday, West Virginia was fourth in the Prospect League with a 2.89 earned run average.

Butler was third at 2.13.

The BlueSox were 4-3 going into Wednesday’s game against Lorain, which was delayed by rain. They led the Miners by a half game in East Division, which was led by newcomer Champion City at 5-2.

The Miners will play the second game of the series at 6:35 p.m Friday before starting a two-game set at Chillicothe at 7:05 p.m. Saturday.

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