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SHENANDOAH JUNCTION — Jefferson High School senior Sammy Roberts is probably better known for his abilities as a quarterback.

Roberts, who plans on attending Shepherd this fall, was one of the driving forces in the Cougars’ success on the gridiron the past two years. He helped lead Jefferson High to 9-1 regular-season record and a berth in the WVSSAC Class AAA playoffs last fall.

But there’s more to Roberts than his quarterbacking ability. He also does a pretty good job throwing a smaller—and a more well-rounded—sphere. 

As a member of Jefferson High’s baseball team over the past few years, Roberts has had a few pitching assignments. In his most recent outing against Frankfort High on Monday, April 25, Roberts pitched a masterful game.

He pitched a complete game, holding the Falcons to four hits, with one earned run, striking out 10 batters in a Jefferson High, 6-2, win. The Cougars would go on to win three more games last week, taking a 24-3 record into Monday’s crucial game at crosstown-rival Washington High.

On Tuesday, April 26, Jefferson High defeated Musselman, 3-1, at home. The Cougars’ also defeated Pendleton County in a pair of games at Doubleday Field in Cooperstown, New York.

Jefferson High defeated Pendleton County, 9-1, last Friday, then won on Saturday, 16-2.

Last Monday’s pitching assignment versus Frankfort would be Roberts’ only duty on the mound last week. He threw 110 pitches, the maximum number allowed by any pitcher in a single game.

“This was my first complete game this year,” Roberts said. “I threw 6 2-3 innings in another game this year.”

Roberts’ basic setup was leading with the fastball, then following up with a curveball, mixing in a few change-ups here and there. He wasn’t taking any unnecessary changes with what he offered up to a batter. Roberts added he usually finished up a batter with a fastball.

This was Jefferson High coach John Lowery’s plan all along for Roberts in the game against the Falcons.

“This was Sammy’s game,” Lowery said.  “We were going to let him go as long as he wanted to. He did a very nice job with his pitches, a very good job picking his spots and keeping the batters off balance.”

Even though Roberts had a good outing against Frankfort, he had some struggles at first. Gave up three straight singles to the Falcons to start the game in the top of the first inning. Frankfort took a 2-0 lead in the first, but it wasn’t going to last.

Roberts got into his rhythm on the mound. His pitches began to click and the Falcons began chasing Roberts’ pitches the rest of the way. Following the first inning, Roberts allowed just two Frankfort hits.

In the meantime, Jefferson High worked its way into the lead. The Cougars got a single run in the bottom of the first, then took the lead with a pair of runs in the third. Sam Wabnitz scored on a passed ball. JJ Polvinale singled to right-center field, driving in the go-ahead run.

The Cougars scored two more runs in the fifth on a passed ball and a Frankfort error. A Falcons’ error in the sixth allowed Jefferson to score its final run.

Wabnitz had two hits to lead the Cougars. As a team, Jefferson High had five hits.

NOTES … Roberts also reflected on Jefferson High’s South Carolina road trip, where the Cougars went 2-2. “We were able to really mesh well as a team,” he said. “We also played some great competition while we were down there. It helped us get better as a team.”

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