The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

High School Sports

May 3, 2014

Encore for Woodrow’s Osborne

Junior homers in 6th, makes big catch in 7th of win over Spring Valley

Woodrow Wilson’s baseball team was among those treated to a performance of “Shrek: The Musical” Friday morning. Playing the part of Captain Hook was none other than right fielder Brent Osborne.

And he heard about it from his teammates.

“We heckled him pretty good,” senior Logan Wriston said. “He wouldn’t look at us, though. He’s a good sport.”

Good thing for Wriston that Osborne didn’t hold it against him.

Osborne hit a solo home run in the sixth inning, then turned in a defensive gem in the seventh to help preserve Class AAA No. 7 Woodrow’s 10-8 win over Spring Valley.

Wriston, who entered as a reliever in the third inning, walked David Brandon to lead off the seventh. Brandon advanced to second on Chandler Milum’s groundout.

Casey Kelly then lifted a fly ball to right. Osborne gave chase toward Woodrow’s cavernous foul territory and made the catch just behind the bullpen mound before sticking his arms out to brace himself as he ran into the fence.

Brandon was able to tag up and move to third, but Wriston struck out Greg Herbert to end the game.

“That was a spectacular catch,” Wriston said. “I didn’t really think he had a chance. I thought I was going to have to throw to (Kelly) again. He’s a great athlete. He always does spectacular things.”

“He lets that ball drop and (Kelly) might get a hit the next (pitch),” Woodrow coach Mark Daniel said of Osborne, who had to rush to the school auditorium for another “Shrek” performance after the game. “Dangerous play. He went at it full bore and didn’t back down.”

It was a nice defensive play in a game that didn’t have many.

Woodrow (12-5) jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first — highlighted by Josh Rakes’ two-run homer to left — but two errors over the next two innings allowed the Timberwolves to tie it at 6-6 off Flying Eagles starter Brady Knapp.

The Eagles, who were done in by bad defense Thursday night in a loss at No. 1 Hurricane, committed four errors against Spring Valley.

Three of Spring Valley’s runs were unearned. The Timberwolves (7-13) had three errors themselves.

“It was a bad performance,” Daniel said. “You take a win any way you can get it. We just weren’t into it today. We had some routine plays we didn’t execute, but we won the game. That’s the bottom line.”

Daniel said the recent field struggles are not reason for concern.

“They were routine plays (Thursday). We dropped two pop flies — that’s something you can correct,” he said. “If it was problems and errors that physically we couldn’t correct, then you’ve got to be worried. But they are things we can work on — charge the ball a little better in the infield and hit our (cutoff men) in the outfield. You stay in the gym three days and deal with rain, that has something to do with it.”

Wriston provided a different look than Knapp, and Spring Valley had trouble adjusting. Only three of the Timberwolves’ 10 hits came off Wriston, who started the game behind the plate for just the second time this season. Normally the center fielder, Wriston caught to give regular starter Dylan Foster a breather.

Wriston, who hopes to attend Surry Community College in North Carolina, got the win after striking out three and walking one over 4 1-3 innings. Both runs charged to Wriston were unearned.

“(Wriston) threw a little bit harder and that made it a little bit more of a challenge to our batters,” Spring Valley coach Jim Hensley said.

Hensley was complimentary of the direction Woodrow’s baseball program has taken. The Eagles defeated the Timberwolves 3-1 in eight innings on March 27.

“This is probably the first time in several years they have beat us twice in one year,” Hensley said. “I’m not taking anything away from them. They’ve kind of got their act together and they’ve got some quality players out there.”

On the field and, in Osborne’s case, on the stage.

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SV:    033    011    0    —    8 10 3

WW:    511    201    x    —    10 10 4

SV: Josh Steele and Jonah Wellman, WW: Brady Knapp, Logan Wriston (3) and Wriston, Dylan Foster (3). WP — Wriston. LP — Steele. Hitting — SV: Sammy Brody 2-4, David Brandon 1-3 (rbi), Chandler Milum 2-4 (3 rbi), Wellman 2-3 (rbi), WW: Jacoby Webb 2-3 (3b), Chris Metrick (3 rbi), Wriston (rbi), Hunter Halstead 2-4 (rbi), Brent Osborne 3-4 (hr, 2 rbi), Josh Rakes 2-4 (hr, 2 rbi), Knapp (rbi).

Records: SV: 7-13; WW: 12-5.

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