SHORT GAP - Frankfort opened the season against the tough AAA Hedgesville Eagles. Frankfort wanted a test right out of the gate and they got one. Not only had Hedgesville dispatched Berkeley County rival Martinsburg by the 10-run rule (11-1) on Wednesday, they were also sending onto the mound ace Chase Delauder.

By Chapin Jewell
Tribune Correspondent
SHORT GAP - Frankfort opened the season against the tough AAA Hedgesville Eagles.  Frankfort wanted a test right out of the gate and they got one. Not only had Hedgesville dispatched Berkeley County rival Martinsburg by the 10-run rule (11-1) on Wednesday, they were also sending onto the mound ace Chase Delauder.
What’s so special about that? Well, not only is Delauter, a senior, committed to pitch and play outfield for Division One James Madison University next year, he is also the reigning West Virginia Sports Writers Association’s prep baseball player of the year in the Mountain State.
From the plate, the Falcons would perform admirably against Delauter, and Cam Rebuck and Ryan Frye who came in for relief for the Eagles. Frankfort’s issue was defense, specifically errors, as the Falcons gave up 10 unearned runs on 10 errors in a 13-3 loss to Hedgesville in five innings.
“Hedgesville is a real good team; they are talented and deep on the mound. Delauter is a D1 commit, but I was pleased with the at bats against him. We made him work hard to get out of the innings,” stated Frankfort coach Matt Miller.  
Delauter gave up five hits and one run in three and one-third innings.
“We didn’t play defense at all; we only gave up three earned runs, but had 10 unearned runs come in on 10 errors. It was the first game and we definitely had some nerves play into it. We will clean that up. But again, I am pleased with the offensive effort against a really good pitcher,” states Miller  
Frankfort got on the board first, in the first inning actually, as Brady Whitacre’s single drove in brother Zack Whitacre to put the Falcons up 1-0. Hedgesville was held scoreless in the first inning, but put up two runs in the second, four in the third, two in the fourth and five in the fifth to take a 13-1 lead over the Falcons heading into the bottom of the fifth.
Frankfort would score two runs in the bottom of the fifth. First, Michael White grounded out into a fielder’s choice with Brendan Whiteman scoring. Zack Whitacre singled to drive in Sebastian Stewart for the second run. Hedgesville would win 13-3 in five innings.
In the loss, Zack Whitacre and Caleb Hare recorded two singles for the Falcons. Sebastian Stewart, Michael White and Brady Whitacre each added a single of their own. Both Whitacres and Michael White drove in one run apiece. On the mound, Zach Whitacre took the loss, allowing two hits and five runs in two innings, striking out two. Caleb Hare and Sebastian Stewart came in for relief, giving up three and five runs, respectively.  
Chase Delauter earned the win for Hedgesville, striking out seven, and giving up five hits and one run in three and one-third innings pitched.  Ryan Frye and Cam Rebuck pitched in relief, with Rebuck giving up Frankfort’s other two runs.  Josh Rush recorded two hits for the Eagles.
Frankfort (0-1) travels to Petersburg on Wednesday at 7:30 p.m.  According to Frankfort coach Matt Miller, “Petersburg is going to be good; they have some really good players back from last year and are well coached. We need to play defense like we are capable of playing.”