Jenkins out-duels Madden, Keyser edges Allegany, 2-0

Mar. 27—KEYSER, W.Va. — The last time Keyser and Allegany squared off, the Campers capitalized on one mistake to win a pitchers' duel: The Golden Tornado returned the favor Tuesday.

Allegany right-hander Bryce Madden went the distance, but two passed balls resulted in two unearned runs in the third inning proved to be the difference.

Keyser's Evan Jenkins, who was on the losing end of the 2023 matchup despite throwing a complete-game three-hitter, was even better Tuesday, throwing a one-hit, 15-strikeout shutout to take down Allegany, 2-0.

"The plan was that he wasn't going to pitch the whole game," Keyser head coach Scott Rohrbaugh said. "You can't ask for anything more. ... He finished strong."

Keyser improved its record to 3-1 with the early-season victory, a third straight win after falling to Hampshire to open the season.

Allegany (1-1) edged the Golden Tornado, 3-2, on a walk-off error in Cumberland in the teams' lone meeting last year, but the roles were reversed Tuesday.

Jenkins led off the third frame with a lead-off single, and Lucas Williamson followed him with a bunt single. A wild pitch moved both runners into scoring position, and both crossed home on consecutive passed balls for the game's lone two runs.

Allegany loaded the bases in the fourth and fifth innings courtesy of five walks and an error; however, on both occasions, Jenkins stranded the bags full with strikeouts.

"Two good pitchers, they went out and battled it out," Allegany head coach Jon Irons said. "Bottom line is, they made a couple plays, and we didn't. ... You hate to see a game end like that because of two errors.

"That's something we have to fix. That's something we have to make sure we focus on more in practice."

Allegany started off the game with a lead-off single by Myles Bascelli, but he was erased with a caught stealing by Logan Rotruck, and that was the last Camper to reach base safely with a hit.

Jenkins finished with a final line of no runs on one hit with 15 strikeouts and five walks in seven innings pitched.

Despite some control issues in the middle innings, Jenkins was able to finish the game thanks to a five-pitch second inning that came in handy late in the contest as his pitch count approached the 105 limit.

Madden took the loss, allowing two unearned runs on four hits with five strikeouts and three walks in six frames of work.

Other than the singles by Jenkins and Williamson in the third inning, Keyser's only other base hits were singles off the bats of Hunter Harr and Patrick Liller in the sixth.

"Give Madden kudos, he's a good pitcher too. Those were two good pitchers dueling out there today," Rohrbaugh said. "We just got some guys on base. Got a break, a bunt moved guys up, a stolen base, a couple wild pitches and we took advantage."

Both teams have a quick turnaround against quality ball clubs.

Keyser heads to East Hardy (1-0) today at 5 p.m., which opened its season Monday with a thrilling 7-6 win over Musselman. Allegany will look to rebound at home against Southern (3-0) today at 4:30 p.m.

The Campers then finish the week with Musselman and Martinsburg (6-0) on Friday at the Hot Stove Complex.

"I filled them in, especially the freshmen, that we're jumping into this head first," Irons said of the difficult schedule early. "We're going to find out a lot about ourselves by the end of the week, for better or worse."

Alex Rychwalski is a sports reporter at the Cumberland Times-News. Follow him on Twitter @arychwal.