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A normally explosive Williamsburg Post 39 offense was stifled at the hands of Matthew Wojciechowski, who threw eight shutout innings Tuesday to help Vienna Post 180 edge Williamsburg 1-0 in the opening game of the state tournament for both teams.
Both Wojciechowski and Kent Klyman engaged in a pitchers’ duel at Riverbend High School with both aces throwing eight innings.
Wojciechowski allowed four hits and struck out four batters, while Klyman allowed three hits and one run while striking out six.
“They had a Division I pitcher going for them. He’s given up three runs all year in 48 innings,” Williamsburg assistant manager Roscoe Bierbrauer said of Wojciechowski. “He pitched pretty well. We had a couple opportunities off of him. He wasn’t overpowering or anything, but he just got ahead in the count and hit his spots.”
While both pitching staffs duked it out on the mound, both offenses struggled to find a rhythm during the low-scoring affair.
Williamsburg was held without a hit until the top of the sixth inning when Brad Vandygriff singled to left field. The hit was followed by a Matt Lansford single to right field, but not before Vandygriff was picked off at first base.
The inning ended without any runners crossing home plate as Luke Patterson grounded out to the pitcher for the final out of the inning.
The bottom of the sixth opened with a walk from Vienna’s Jarad Appleson. After Williamsburg recorded back-to-back outs, Vienna’s Garrett Zoukis delivered a single to left field that sent Appleson to third base. A fielding error on the play allowed Appleson to score the game’s lone run.
Sean Hughes smacked a double in the top of the seventh inning, while Klyman added a single in the top of the eighth inning. Neither hit resulted in runs for Williamsburg.
Still trailing by one run in the top of the ninth inning and nearing the top of their rotation, Williamsburg ended the game with three straight outs with a groundout, strikeout and flyout.
The loss drops Williamsburg to 13-4 on the season. One more loss in the state tournament will end the team’s season. Williamsburg will continue its postseason run against Winchester Post 21 at 10 a.m. Wednesday.
“We’re pretty familiar with Winchester,” Bierbrauer said. “We played them two years ago when we hosted the state tournament. That’s a hotbed for baseball in Virginia each year. … They’re a solid team.”
Williamsburg Post 39: 000;000;000 – 0 4 2
Vienna Post 180: 000;001;00x – 1 3 0
WP: Matthew Wojciechowski
LP: Kent Klyman
Williamsburg: Sean Hughes (1-3), Kent Klyman (1-3)
Vienna: Conner Jones (1-4), Jarad Appleson (R, BB)