Martin Oil drops rubber match to McMullen Furniture at Vets Field

While the two opponents both had 10 hits showing on the scoreboard at Vets Field in Altoona, the run totals were very different. Martin Oil matched McMullen Furniture in the first category, but lost the ballgame 6-1. Perhaps the third category explained at least partly why McMullen was the clear-cut victor in the 8:30 p.m. game that could very well be a preview of a first round George B. Kelley Federation playoff matchup that is scheduled to begin on Friday, July 8.
Martin Oil committed four errors to one miscue for McMullen Furniture.
The two clubs had split two previous games with Martin Oil winning 10-6 two weeks ago, and McMullen dropping Martin Oil in the first week of the season by an 8-1 margin.
“We had the same number of hits that they did,” said Martin Oil manager Ed Davis. “But you can’t leave all the runners we had on base without scoring them. And you can’t have four errors and expect to win against a good team in this league. We got runners on base, but we couldn’t get the timely hits which we needed to get those runners home.”
McMullen scored single tallies in the first and second and pushed across two more in each of the third and fourth innings and got a seven strikeout, one walk performance from left-hander Brian Beasom. Employing a crafty move to first base, Beasom took away Martin Oil’s speed on the bases, which had kept putting runners in scoring position and pressure on opposing pitchers for most of the season. Martin Oil had only one stolen base and that was a result of McMullen paying attention to a baserunner already at third base, in the third inning when Alex Miller actually was picked off, but made it to second, because McMullen was concerned about Brandon Beech scoring from third base. One runner was caught stealing and another was plucked off first base.
Earnie Kelley went the distance for Martin Oil to take the loss. The 16-year old lefty fanned six and walked two, and was the victim of some shoddy fielding by his teammates, who should have gotten him out of several situations, but didn’t.
Dan Conrad, who had six hits in the three games against Martin Oil this year, Taylor Miller, Jake Settle, who bombed a double and a triple, and Bryan Plummer each had two hits for McMullen.
Martin Oil had runners on base in every inning, but were able to manage a score only in the second, to temporarily knot the score at 1-1.
Troy Brunner slugged a triple to lead off the frame and came home when Blaze Winterstein connected for a single up the middle on the first pitch thrown to him by Beasom. Chris Alley followed with a single, but Beasom picked off Winterstein and got a comebacker to the mound and a strikeout to end the biggest threat Martin Oil would mount.
Beech beat out an infield single with one out in the third, and went all the way to third on a single by Kelley, but once again, Beasom took care of business by himself with a comebacker and strikeout for the final two outs of the inning.
Zach Tomchick singled with two outs in the first, but was caught stealing. Alley singled with one down in the fourth, but was stranded at first. Kelley reached on a single with two outs in the fifth, but courtesy runner Brian Dougherty was picked off for the third out. Brunner doubled with one gone in the sixth inning and Winterstein was safe on McMullen’s only error of the game.. Both runners were stranded. Finally in the seventh, trying to get a rally going, Brian Hostler walked to lead off the frame and Beech was safe on his second infield hit of the ballgame. Kelley looped a humpback liner that was just caught by McMullen third baseman Wes Plummer, who then doubled up Beech who was running on the play, at first, to end the game.
Beech, Kelley, Brunner and Alley each had two hits to lead Martin Oil (14-7), who are off today, then play a double header at Vets Field on Friday. The first game set to get underway at 8:30 p.m. will be the completion of the Park Furniture game that was stopped because of darkness on June 21 with Martin Oil leading 16-10 after six complete innings. Immediately after that one, Martin Oil and ReMax will play a seven-inning game. The Martin Oil-Barkman Oil/Altoona First game that was rained out on Tuesday will be made up on Tuesday, July 5, at Bellwood, at 6 p.m.
McMullen Furniture 6 Martin Oil 1
Martin Oil – Beech, lf, 4-0-2; Kelley, p, 4-0-2; A. Miller, cr, 0-0-0; Dougherty, cr, 0-0-0; Tomchick, rf, 3-0-1; Brunner, 1b, 3-1-2; Winterstein, c, 3-0-1; Alley, ss, 3-0-2; Coho, 3b, 3-0-0; Hostler, 2b, 2-0-0; Harris, cf, 3-0-0. TOTALS 28-1-10.
McMullen Furniture – T. Miller, 2b, 4-0-2; Conrad, cf, 4-2-2; Settle, c, 4-2-2; Briggs, cr, 0-0-0; B. Plummer, rf, 4-0-2; Eck, ss, 2-1-0; Haulman, 1b, 3-0-1; W. Plummer, 3b, 3-1-1; Beasom, p, 2-0-0; Sprouse, lf, 2-0-0. TOTALS 28-6-10.
Martin Oil 010 000 0 1-10-4.
McMullen Furniture 112 200 0 6-10-0.
2B: Brunner, Settle, b. Plummer.
3B: Brunner, Settle.
RBI: Winterstein, B. Plummer 2, T. Miller, Settle, W. Plummer.
SO: Kelley 6, Beasom 7.
BB: Kelley 2, Beasom 1.
WP: Beasom LP: Kelley