With the return of Josh Butts to the mound, a new regular season opened Tuesday with a 3-0 shutout of visiting Blountstown for the Port St. Joe Jr./Sr. High School baseball team.
Butts pitched five innings and earned the win, allowing three hits while striking out seven and walking four.
“I was very happy for him,” said Port St. Joe coach Ashley Summerlin, noting shoulder surgery which kept Butts off the mound last season. “He gave us the start we wanted.”
John Austin Gee pitched the final two innings to earn the save, allowing one hit while striking out four and walking two.
“We struck out 11 for the game which is pretty good,” Summerlin said. “For them to come out and pitch that way was great to see.”
Offensively, the Tiger Sharks were not exactly sharp, striking out nine times while walking just twice.
But the two hits they did have were timely and Port St. Joe was 4 for 4 on stolen bases.
Caden Turrell and Jaden Grantland at the top of the order each walked, stole a base and scored.
Caleb Butts had an RBI double and Kelvin Griffin an RBI single and Cameron Harmon singled, stole two bases and scored.
“It was a good night,” Summerlin said. “We got to see what we have. We got exposed a little bit so we can see what we have to work on.
“Now, it is on to Arnold (tonight in Panama City Beach).”