FAYETTEVILLE -- Aiden Yoakley started strong and finished stronger Friday night in leading Fayetteville to its fourth straight win.
The left-hander came on in relief with two runners on base in the third inning and escaped with minimal damage, then finished off a solid outing by getting a 6-4-3 double-play to end the game, pumping his fist as the final out was recored.
Harris, Patrick (3), Strider (5) and Henderson; J. Davenport, Yoakley (3) and Tate. W - Yoakley, 1-0. L - Harris, 0-1. HRs. - None.
Yoakley went 4.2 innings and allowed Mountain Home just one hit with three strikeouts in an 11-4 win at Bulldog Field in Fayetteville's final tune-up before opening 7A-West Conference play on Monday at Bentonville.
"The big thing with him is commanding the strike zone," Fayetteville baseball coach Scott Gallagher said. "When he's pounding the strike zone and able to mix speeds, he's effective."
Yoakley (1-0) was making just his second appearance of the season, but the senior was sharp from the start, striking out Mountain Home catcher Ben Henderson with runners at second and third with no outs. Yoakley allowed one of the inherited runners to score but escaped the jam with a strikeout and groundout to keep the Bulldogs close.
Mountain Home (2-4) led 1-0 and 3-2 before the Bulldogs got to Bombers' starter Satch Harris in the fourth inning for a pair of runs on a passed ball and wild pitch for a 4-3 lead. The damage could have been much worse for Mountain Home, but reliever Drake Patrick coaxed a pair of popups and a fly to right to end the inning with the bases loaded.
Fayetteville (4-2-1) blew the game open in the fifth inning, scoring five runs. With one out, Miller Pleimann doubled to right to start a six-hit inning for the Bulldogs. Jackson Down drove in Pleimann with a single. After Mason Shaw singled, Beau Stuckey blasted a two-run triple and Jeff Sinacore added an RBI single. Luke Davenport followed with a triple and the Bulldogs never looked back.
The game was a homecoming for former Fayetteville and Arkansas infielder Tim Carver, who is in his first season as the coach at Mountain Home.
"This is pretty cool to come back here and see all the people that I haven't seen in a while," Carver said. "My mom got to come watch. I'm just so fortunate to be where I'm at now."
Carver said making the adjustment from player to coach has been fairly smooth.
"It's different because you have to know the kids come first before the athlete," Carver said. "Just making sure we're doing things the right way so that it helps them as a person not just on the baseball field. So that part of the game, that aspect is really the reason I got into it."
Fayetteville had 14 hits Friday including six extra-base knocks. Matthew Magre was 2-for-3 with two doubles, and the Bulldogs belted three triples as Mason Shaw also had a three-bagger.
Gallagher said the team is not hitting on all cylinders yet just seven games into the season, but he likes where they are headed as league play starts Monday at Bentonville.
"This is a big series with Bentonville coming up," Gallagher said. "It's go time."
Bentonville West 9, Pea Ridge 0
Four West pitchers combined for a three-hitter Friday as the Wolverines enter 7A-West Conference play unbeaten with a win over Pea Ridge at the Wolverine Athletic Complex.
Dylan Carter struck out five of the seven batters he faced in his two innings of work. Dakota McDonald picked up the win in relief, while Kendal Thornton and Carter Bourg saw time on the mound.
Joey Aden and Roger Alexander each had two hits and drove in a run for West (5-0), which scored three runs in the first and five more in the third. Carl Alexander added a two-run double, while Will Jarrett belted an RBI triple in the third.
Van Buren 12, Siloam Springs 2
Landry Wilkerson allowed just four hits and Bryson Patrick drove in four runs to lead the Pointers.
Chase Moore was 3-for-4 with two doubles for Van Buren and Patrick had two singles to drive in four runs.
Baron Meek and Chance Hilburn each had two hits for Siloam Springs.
Springdale High 7, Farmington 4
The Bulldogs rallied past Farmington in the middle innings after giving up four runs in the first two innings on the road Friday.
Ben Roach pitched four innings to earn the win and also homered in the win. Roach allowed just two hits and struck out five.
Dylan Rollins and Sabino Nino had two hits each for the Bulldogs (5-2) and combined for 5 RBIs.
Springdale will host Rogers Heritage in the 7A-West Conference opener on Monday at Tyson Park starting at 5 p.m.
Sports on 03/10/2018
Print Headline: Bulldogs win fourth straight