East Texas Pump Jacks fans knew that the team’s Independence Weekend fireworks spectacle would take place following Saturday night’s game, on July 5th.
Scott Copeland decided to give them a show of his own on the Fourth of July, though.
Copeland had had his best start of the season Friday night, carrying a no-hitter into the sixth inning and going the distance in a 5-1 victory over the visiting Brazos Valley Bombers at Driller Park Friday night.
Andrew Nettune had a two-run triple and Matt Curry drove in two as well, as the Pump Jacks moved into a three-way tie for second place in the TCL. The Jacks, Bombers, and Coppell Copperheads are all four games behind the first-place McKinney Marshals, with the Marshals coming to Driller Park this weekend for a two-game set.
In lieu of the traditional Fourth of July fireworks – which will take place on Saturday – the Pump Jacks gave away inaugural season T-shirts to the first 500 fans walking through the gates Friday night. The giveaway was sponsored by Kilgore-based Benchmark Events & Promotions.
The game belonged to Copeland (1-1), who was absolutely untouchable for the first five innings. After allowing a one-out walk in the first inning, the White Oak native retired the next 15 Bombers in a row to enter the sixth inning with a no-hitter still intact. Chad Colbert broke up the no-no with a one-out single in the sixth.
Copeland carried the shutout into the ninth inning, allowing a meaningless run in the final frame for a 5-1 margin. He finished with six hits and two walks against six strikeouts in nine innings pitched, flashing the talent and potential that earned him a commitment to play for Southern Miss next spring.
The Pump Jacks picked up all the runs they would need to back up Copeland in the fourth inning. Nate Bryan picked up a one out walk and Paige Hodges singled to put two Jacks on base. One batter later, Nettune legged out a triple that scored Bryan and Hodges to give Copeland all the cushion he would need.
East Texas added three more in the seventh to put the game out of reach. With one out, Blake Yazel was hit by a pitch for the second time in the game. Adam De La Garza and Josh Riley followed with walks to load the bases. Yazel scored and the other two runners advanced on a wild pitch, leaving two runners in scoring position for Curry. Curry’s liner fell just a few inches inside the first base line, bringing home De La Garza and Riley to up the margin to 5-0.
Hodges led the Pump Jacks with two hits on the evening, although Bryan and Yazel each reached base three times. Bryan earned two walks and singled, while Yazel drew a walk and was hit by a pitch twice.
The Jacks’ Independence Weekend celebration continues on Saturday, July 5, with a special post-game fireworks display. The spectacle is expected to surpass the awe-inspiring show fans witnessed on June 13. This Independence Weekend fireworks show will feature an exclusive soundtrack created just for the occasion.
On Sunday, July 6, East Texas will host the first “Family Night” of the season, with discounts on tickets and meal packages available that will certainly appeal to families – or maybe just friends looking to come to the ballpark and save a few bucks. Four grandstand tickets will cost just $12 – a savings of as much as 40%. Fans will also have the option of purchasing a meal package with their tickets, bringing the total for all four guests – including both tickets and meals – to only $25. You can’t find a better deal on food and fun anywhere in East Texas!
Tickets for the Independence Weekend celebration and the remainder of the Jacks’ inaugural season schedule are on sale now. Fans may purchase tickets at the Pump Jacks office at 1100 Stone Road, Suite 120, in Kilgore, or over the phone at (903) 218-GO ET. Tickets may also be purchased online – and printed at home on any home printer – by visiting www.pumpjacksbaseball.com.
Single-game tickets start at $5 each – or $4 for children and seniors – for grandstand general admission tickets. Upper Box seats are $8 each, and Lower Box seats, which feature in-your-seat wait service, are only $10 per ticket.