Knights' Blume blossoms in opener


Matt Blume picked up where he left off, and that was good for the Evans Knights baseball team.


Blume, a senior and the Knights' top returning pitcher, helped his team calm its first-game nerves during Evans' 3-2 victory Monday at rival Greenbrier.

Blume pitched his way around more than one trouble spot, and the Knights beat their rivals for the third consecutive time after a season sweep in 2009.

"That was just an outstanding game for him," Evans coach Ricky Beale said of Blume, who pitched Evans to victory as a junior during the teams' first meeting. "He gave us a chance."

Knights senior Tevin Nelson reached safely three in of his four at-bats and scored twice.

Blume's only costly mistake was a fastball Greenbrier's Kyler Timmerman ripped over the center field fence. The shot tied the game at one in the fourth.

The game appeared hinged on how the starters would do down the stretch.

But Evans pushed across two more during the fifth. Jordan Rice tripled and scored when the throw to third came in high. Nelson scored his second run after a pop-up landed between three Greenbrier players.

"We had opportunities to do big things," Timmerman said. "We just didn't get the job done."

Blume retired the three batters after Timmerman's home run. He forced a double play to escape a jam the next inning and limited Greenbrier to a run during a tough sixth.

"I don't have a whole lot positive to say about us, but I can tell you Matt Blume is just a fantastic kid," Greenbrier coach Chris Wilkins said. "Just a hard-nosed kid, doesn't let errors rattle him. He did the same thing to us last year."

Wilkins praised ace Chad Farmer, who did not allow much outside a fifth-inning walk. All three of the Knights' runs were scored on errors.

"If there was a positive, that was it," Wilkins said.