XENIA — The Xenia Scouts couldn’t get anything going offensively or defensively as they struggled against the Southern Ohio Copperheads, Wednesday night at Grady’s Field. The Scouts dropped their first game in a three-game series, 14-3.
Xenia got behind early in their only home game of the postseason series, giving up a solo home run in the first inning. Scouts’ starting pitcher Aaron Alexander had Southern Ohio’s leadoff batter, Tyler Finkler, down 0-2. After two balls, Finkler knocked a homer to left field to get things started for the Copperheads. The run was a sign of things to come.
The Scouts struggled offensively early. The first three batters in their lineup dropped out after a fly out to right field, and two stikeouts. Xenia didn’t get a hit until the third inning.
The Copperheads put up five runs in the next two innings. Branden Boggetto and Jae Roberts each scored off sacrifice flies from Kyle Dean and Bobby Indeglia respectively in the second inning. Brett Impemba drove home two runs in the third and then scored off a sacrifice fly from Boggetto.
Meanwhile, Copperheads pitcher Matt Mikolajczak was on point from the mound. He had seven strikeouts in the game and gave up five hits, holding the Scouts scoreless through eight innings.
The Scouts cycled through three pitchers in the first eight innings. Alexander was pulled after giving up five hits and five runs through two innings of work. Tyler Taute and Brett Ebers didn’t fare much better. As a group they gave up nine hits and seven walks through eight innings, with only one strikeout a piece. Issac Holt came in to close the game in the ninth, but it was too late.
The Copperheads solidified their lead, adding three runs in the sixth and five in the top of the eighth. Tyler Tompson came in to close the game for S. Ohio and gave up three runs, but the rally caps wouldn’t work on this night.
Both teams now head to Bob Wren Stadium in Athens for the next two games in the series. Game Two is set for a 7:30 p.m. start on Friday.