The Free Press (Edinburg, VA)
Rebels win 3 on road to climb standings
New Market threatens Luray for division lead
By Jerry Carter - July 24, 2009
New Market continued to climb the Valley Baseball League standings this past week, showing no ill effects of a pair of all-star games along the way.
The Rebels ran off three straight road victories to push their record to 18-15 and have pulled to within a half game of Central Division leading Luray.
The Rebels have won seven of the last 10 games by using a combination of solid starting pitching and timely pitching. The three-game road-winning streak started at Bulldog Field in Luray where New Market outslugged the defending VBL champions, 12-7.
The Rebels plated all 12 runs in the first five innings as Steve Owens improved his record to 5-1 on the season. Owens fanned nine of the 20 Wranglers he faced.
Two nights later New Market made the short drive down I-81 to James Madison University for a contest with Harrisonburg. Once again pitching dominated as Garrett Baker earned his first victory of the season by tossing seven innings of one run ball. Closer Brian Burgess came in for the ninth and earned his seventh save of the season in the 4-1 victory.
New Market completed the rare road win Hat Trick Sunday night when the team jumped both mountain ranges to play in Warrenton versus Fauquier. The Gators were simply no match for Eric Alessio in the 6-0 shutout. Alessio pitched six innings of scoreless baseball and upped his mark on the season to 4-0.
Returning home for the first time since July 11th, the Rebels found two opponents waiting for them on Monday night. The red-hot Front Royal Cardinals and Mother Nature both had their game faces on and the game was suspended in the 9TH inning when another storm front worked its way to Rebel Park. The VBL announced the game will only be completed if it has a direct effect on the playoffs. Front Royal leads 5-4 in the ninth if and when the game is completed.
Kenny Mickens continues to lead New Market offensively with a .369 batting average with Richard Gonzalez second at .342. Sanchez Gartman leads the team with seven home runs while Zack Helgeson is second with five long balls.
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