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Oxford baseball routs West Point in five innings, improves to 5-0 in 2-5A

There is taking care of business and then there is what the Oxford baseball team did on Tuesday evening. The Chargers used a loud first inning and took advantage of sloppy play to defeat West Point 19-2 in 4 1/2 innings at Edwin Moak Field.

The win improved Oxford (20-2) to 5-0 in Region 2-5A and with only four more games left in region play, all but assures them a chance to defend the Class 5A state championship in the postseason.

The night got started quick for the Chargers, who scored the first 13 runs of the game in the first inning. They batted around and had 16 at-bats to record nine hits and cashed in on three West Point errors.

“We’ve come off about a three-week span where we’ve had to play every game,” Oxford head coach Chris Baughman said. “Not to take away anything from West Point, but ultimately the kids have to be ready to come out and play. (West Point) helped us some in the first inning but we put a lot of pressure and started barreling up a bunch of balls.”

The first inning fireworks was capped by a two-run home run by shortstop Drew Bianco. The brothers Bianco accounted for both long-balls on the night with first baseman Ben hitting a two-run home of his own in the third, scoring Drew, to make 15-0. They added four more runs in the fourth inning.

Drew finished 2-for-2 at the plate with two runs batted in off the home run and scored three runs. Ben went 1-for-2 with two RBIs and scored two runs. Carson Stinnett finished 2-for-3 with one RBI and two runs scored.

The dominance carried over to the pitching mound as Oxford starter Reed Markle earned his third win of the season. Marble pitched a complete game, giving up two runs off five hits while striking out two and walking one Green Wave batter. It was the first action for Markle in two weeks after sitting last week due to a sore arm.

“He was rusty,” Baughman said. “He’s been sore, which is why we skipped his start last week. He’s been a little sore and hadn’t thrown very much over the past two weeks. He gives up two runs, but you go back and look at it and are those plays made if it’s a 2-1 game? Maybe, maybe not. All I wanted him to do at that point was just come in and pound the zone and he did.”

West Point (7-12, 1-4) scored their two runs in the top of the fourth inning.

The Green Wave’s starter, Bobby Woodard, was roughed up and his outing did not get past the first inning. Woodward went 2/3 of the opening frame, giving up 13 runs off nine hits and walked one Chargers batter.