The offense had gotten the headlines early in the season but on Monday night in Edina it was Scotland County’s pitching that did the trick. Senior Aaron Buford tossed a gem to help Scotland County remain unbeaten, topping Knox County 3-0 in a game that was moved to Edina due to wet field conditions in Memphis.
Knox County’s Hayes Klocke matched Buford early on as the two teams locked in a scoreless pitchers’ duel through four innings.
The Tigers threatened in the second. Grant Campbell led off with a base hit. He stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch. But Campbell was thrown out at the plate trying to tag up on a fly ball and then was ejected for arguing the call.
SCR-I had another base runner thrown out in the fourth inning when Buford was caught stealing to end a scoring threat.
After surrendering a leadoff single, Buford retired 11 straight batters until a two out single by Klocke in the bottom of the fourth.
The Tigers finally got on the board in the fifth inning thanks to a Knox County error. Justin McKee singled with one out. He stole second base and then came in to score when Elijah Cooley reached on an error to make the score 1-0.
SCR-I left the bases loaded in the sixth inning. Gage Dodge was hit by a pitch and Buford reached on an error before Will Fromm was walked to load the bases. But Klocke struck out Parker Triplett and McKee to end the threat.
SCR-I put some insurance on the board in the seventh inning. Lane Pence narrowly missed his third home run of the season, instead settling for a double off the fence. After a base hit by Cooley, Aaron Blessing plated both runs with a single to right field to extend the lead to 3-0.
That was more than enough for Buford, who finished off the shutout. The senior surrendered just three hits in seven innings of work, walking none while striking out 12 batters.
The Tigers improved to 6-0 on the season.
Klocke held the Tigers to just six hits on the night. Blessing was 1-3 with two RBIs. Buford was 1-3 with a walk and Pence went 1-3 with a double.