North Jefferson News, Gardendale, AL

Local Sports

April 19, 2014

Class 5A baseball playoffs: Mortimer Jordan sweeps Pinson Valley, 7-6 (9 innings) and 7-0

Nathan Stover flirts with perfection in series clincher

(Continued)

KIMBERLY —

"He told me when I went out and warmed up," Stover said. "I told him that I wanted to do it, and that I could do it. And I did. That was the best game I've ever pitched."

It was not an overpowering performance by Stover. He only threw two strikeouts, and the first didn't come until the fifth inning.

The perfect game went by the boards when designated hitter Baker Hodge drew a base on balls to start the seventh. After getting Destin Davidson to fly out to center field and then claiming Zac Ray as his second strikeout victim, Destin's twin brother Hunter came up and rapped a sharp line drive just inside the third base foul line for a double, ending the bid for a no-hitter and putting Pinson runners on second and third with two out.

Bur Stover got Brett Jordan to hit a grounder to shortstop, which was easily scooped up by Dalton Hudson and tossed to first to end the game and clinch the playoff sweep.

The Devils took control offensively in the early going, taking advantage of shaky Tribe pitching. Both Jordan runs in the first inning and one of three in the second scored off of wild pitches from starter Levi Miller, who left the mound after two outs in the second. Coach Shane Chappell pulled Miller after Hudson reached base on a passed ball on a third strike, and then Austin Davis got on board when Miller hit him with a pitch.

Hunter Davidson relieved Miller, and promptly served up a triple by Stover that brought home Hudson and Davis. Stover then scored on a wild pitch.

It was also a stellar game for Stover at the plate, as he went 4-for-4 with the two RBIs.

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