WEIRTON - Sometimes soul searching can go a long way toward making an improvement and it did Thursday night for visiting Steubenville Big Red, which had some timely hitting and took advantage of a couple of Weir High errors to take home a 5-0 win at Ed Bowman Field.
It was a bounce-back win for Big Red (3-1) after absorbing its first loss a night earlier at Wheeling Park.
"We didn't play very well last night (Wednesday) so we did some talking before coming over here today and we played a lot better," said veteran Big Red coach Fred Heatherington.
WINNING PITCHER — Big Red picher Anthony Zorne delivers a pitch during Big Red’s 5-0 win over Weir Thursday at Ed Bowman Field in Weirton.
-- Fred Younce
Heatherington got a complete game win from lefty Anthony Zorne, who tossed a nifty three-hitter.
Senior left fielder Pat Pizzoferrato led the Steubenville offense with two of his team's five hits. Pizzoferrato, who smashed a home run over the left-center field fence in the fourth inning, was on base all three times he batted, scoring three times and he drove in two runs. John Linn and designated hitter Justin Corsi each singled, while Evan Westlake belted an RBI double.
Heatherington was pleased with the pitching performance of Zorne.
"Anthony threw a lot of strikes, stayed ahead in the count, which kept our fielders on their toes, and we put the ball in play," he said. "We also ran the bases well, so we had a good complete game."
Zorne, who kept the Red Rider hitters off balance throughout, gave up just three singles, walked five and struck out five.
Pizzoferrato drove in Big Red's first run of the game in the top of the first inning with a single to right field that brought home second baseman John Linn, who had singled and stole second base. Corsi followed Pizzoferrato with a single and both moved up on a wild pitch.
Westlake grounded to third base and while Corsi got caught between second and third, Pizzoferrato raced for home and crossed the plate before Corsi was tagged out.
Big Red plated another run in the third inning when Pizzoferrato hit his homer.
"Pizzoferrato has been hitting the ball hard, but everybody has been doing that," Heatherington said. "If we can continue to do that and put pressure on the defense, then your chances are good to win the game."
Big Red got two more runs in the sixth inning. With two outs, Pizzoferrato walked and scored all the way from first base when a Corsi ground ball got under the glove of the Red Rider second baseman and then got under the glove of the right fielder. Corsi scored on Westlake's RBI double to left-center field.
"We had some untimely errors," said Rider coach Bob Rosnick, whose team dropped its third game after one victory.
"We had two outs and nobody on then gave up a walk and that double error really hurt. You can't do that against a good team. Against good teams like that you have to play a clean game, make the routine plays and we didn't make the routine plays today."
Rosnick used three pitchers with senior Zach Knuutila starting for Weir High. He went three innings yielding two hits and two runs while walking one. Michael Curtis relieved him and pitched the fourth inning giving up the home run to Pizzoferrato and struck out two. Mitch Viakley finished the game yielding two unearned runs, a hit and a walk.
Weir High takes the field next on Saturday hosting Buckeye Local in a doubleheader while Big Red travels to Hebron Lakewood near Columbus Saturday to play Hebron Lakewood and Riverview in what amounts to a doubleheader.
Big Red 5, Weir 0
Big Red 200 102 0 - 5 5 0
Weir 000 000 0 - 0 3 3
BIG RED (3-1): Zorne (WP, 5K, 5BB) and McClurg; Pizzoferrato HR, S, 3R, 2RBI; Linn S, R; Corsi S, R; Westlake RBI, 2B.
WEIR (1-3): Knuutila (LP, 0K, 1BB), Curtis (4th, 2K, 0BB), Viakley (5th, 0K, 3BB) and Curtis, Beck, Curtis; Duke S, Cessna S, Viakley S.