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Tankersley outduels Madison again, 1-0

[04/09/01] Scoring chances figured to be few and far between in Saturday’s Warren Central-Madison Central game. So when WC finally got an opportunity to break through in the bottom of the fifth inning, Kevin Coker knew the Vikings had better make the most of it.

Coker bounced a bases-loaded single into left field to score Jeff Mitchell with the game’s only run in the Vikings’ 1-0 victory.

“We always wait around, and a couple of years ago we waited around too long and got beat at Forest Hill. We didn’t want that to happen tonight,” Coker said. “That’s what we all talked about. Don’t wait around and don’t get your hearts broken. So we went out and broke their heart.”

Taylor Tankersley jammed his ankle legging out a first-inning grounder, but stayed in the game and allowed just four hits while striking out nine to get the complete-game win. He beat MC 1-0 a week ago.

Tankersley outdueled MC’s Bo Bradberry, who surrendered six hits all singles struck out five and walked one.

“We had our chances to win, we thought we played well enough to win. We certainly got good pitching and good defense, but we left some men on base and we just failed to do some of the little things … ,” MC coach Mike Rosamond said.

MC (18-4) had two runners on in each of the first three innings, but missed its best chance to score when second baseman Dillon Suddeth missed a suicide squeeze.

WC (26-1) had fewer chances against Bradberry. He allowed only three baserunners until the fifth.

Then, he walked Carl Upton with one out before allowing back-to-back singles to John Morgan Mims and Kyle Simmons to load the bases. Both hits were too shallow to risk sending a runner home, but Coker’s hit found its way into left. Mitchell, running for Upton, scored easily to provide Tankersley all the cushion he needed.

Tankersley allowed a leadoff single to Brett Byrd to start the sixth, then retired the last six batters in order to end the game. He got some help from Coker, who made a diving catch on a fouled bunt attempt in the sixth.

“I’m happy with the performance when it comes to the guys’ guts. Mainly Taylor … he just pitched on heart the last inning.,” WC coach Sam Temple said. “(Madison) has a great ball team. Anybody that loves baseball, I’m sure they enjoyed that ballgame.”