04/21/06 — Deacon Jones Invitational - Rosewood, Cary Academy each claim 9-inning victory

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Deacon Jones Invitational - Rosewood, Cary Academy each claim 9-inning victory

By Gabe Whisnant
Published in Sports on April 21, 2006 2:11 PM

PRINCETON -- The Rosewood-Princeton baseball rivalry will have to wait a few weeks before it is renewed.

The Eagles defeated Spring Creek, 3-2 in nine innings on Thursday and advanced to the championship game of the Deacon Jones Invitational at Princeton High School. But the Bulldogs suffered a 10-9 loss -- also in a nine-inning nail-biter -- to Cary Academy in the nightcap.

Rosewood will face Cary Academy in the championship tonight at 7 p.m., after the host Bulldogs take on the Gators in the consolation game at 4 p.m.

"This game showed we have some fight in us. It's a new season as we start the second half," Rosewood coach Josh Smith said. "We've got to improve this week, so we can get better next week in the second half of the conference."

Unlike the nightcap, hits were at a premium in the early game between the Eagles and Gators as the two Wayne County rivals combined for just six hits in nine innings. But similar to Thursday's finale, errors played a big role in the outcome.

Rosewood's Holt Rains started the top of the ninth by reaching on an infield error, then advanced all the way to third on an errant pick-off throw. Several pitches later, another bad toss on a pick-off attempt at third -- the Gators fifth error of the game -- allowed Rains to sprint home for the go-ahead run.

Eagles' reliever Dustin Sittig, yielded a walk and a single to Anthony Brogden in the ninth, but the senior kept Spring Creek off the scoreboard and finished off the win. Sittig gave up no runs on only two hits with four strikeouts and two walks in 42/3 innings of relief work.

Rosewood starter Dave Martel combined to give up two runs (one earned) on only one hit, walking three and striking out two.

Brogden, who had two of the Gators' three hits, turned in a solid effort on the mound as well -- allowing only one hit and two runs (none earned) with nine strikeouts and one walk in six full innings. The sophomore didn't allow a hit until Kevin Shanle's double in the fifth, which led to the Eagles second unearned run of the game after a Spring Creek error.

"Every time Anthony has been on the mound, we've had a chance," Spring Creek coach Roger May said. "I can't say enough about him. We played with some heart and character today."

Rosewood scored one in the first as Kyle Bunn scored Trey Kriger from third on a sacrifice fly.

Spring Creek's Josh Singleton provided an RBI ground out in the first, while the Gators posted an unearned run in the fourth against Martel after a two-out infield error.

Alex Casey, who tossed the final three innings, suffered the loss in relief for Spring Creek.

Cary Academy 10, Princeton 9 (9 inn.)

After getting down sacrifice bunts to help push across runs in both the fourth and fifth innings, Cary Academy's Charles Hendren smacked the game-winning, RBI single against Princeton's Patrick Gatewood in the top of the ninth -- scoring teammate Bradley Roberts to push the score to its final margin.

The Chargers jumped out to a 3-0 lead -- aided by a pair of Princeton errors -- in the top of the first with the Bulldogs' Ryan Daughtry on the mound.

"We made some errors early that hurt us. That got us in a hole, and we couldn't be as aggressive at the plate as we wanted to be," Princeton assistant coach Russell Williamson said. "That's not the type of baseball we like to play."

With keys hits by Michael Sousa, Adam Kramer, Barrett Roberts and Ian Wilson, Cary Academy went up 9-4 heading into the top of the fifth, before the home team steadily started chipping away.

Facing Cary Academy starter Preston Bull, Kyle Harmon and Gatewood sparked a two-run rally in the fifth for the Bulldogs with one run-scoring single each. Princeton's Daniel Gerrell, Jonathan Hartley and Harmon posted singles in the sixth and the Chargers committed their fifth-of-six errors as the Bulldogs pulled within one at 9-8.

Bull had a significant scare in the sixth when a line drive off the bat of Hartley hit him in the chest. He fell over in obvious pain and laid on the ground for several minutes, before getting up and pitching to the next two batters.

Chargers' reliever Adam Kramer was shaky in the seventh, giving up a two-out, game-tying triple to Gerrell. Gerrell's triple scored Colin Parker, who reached on an error, for Princeton's sixth unearned run of the game. Gerrell just missed his second walk-off home run of the season by several feet.

From there Kramer, a hard-throwing right-hander, settled into a rhythm and retired the final seven batters he faced -- five by strikeout.

Princeton used five pitchers in the loss with only Chris Hinton tossing more than two innings. Harmon, Dustin Pate and Gatewood, who suffered the loss, all saw relief work.

Bulldogs' head coach Bruce Proctor will return to the dugout today after serving a two-game suspension due to being ejected from a home game against Ayden-Grifton.

2006 Deacon Jones Invitational

(at Princeton HS)

Game one

Rosewood 100 010 001 -- 3 3 2

Spring Creek 100 100 000 -- 2 3 5

Leading hitters -- Rosewood -- Kevin Shanle 2-4, 2B; Dustin Sittig 1-4. Spring Creek -- Anthony Brogden 2-4; Timothy Rogers 1-4.


Rosewood (8-7)

Martel 41/3 1 2 1 3 2

Sittig (W) 42/3 2 0 0 2 4

Spring Creek (1-16)

Brogden 6 1 2 0 1 9

Casey (L) 3 2 1 0 1 2

Game two

Cary Acad. 300 420 001 -- 10 12 6

Princeton 020 222 100 -- 9 13 2

Leading hitters -- Cary Academy -- Ian Wilson 2-3, 2 RBIs; Barrett Roberts 3-4, 3B, RBI; Adam Kramer 1-2, 2B, 2 RBIs; Michael Sousa 3-5, 2B, RBI. Princeton -- Patrick Gatewood 2-6, 2 RBIs; Daniel Gerrell 3-4, 3B, 2 RBIs; Kyle Harmon 3-5, 2 RBIs.


Cary Academy (8-6)

Bull 52/3 11 8 3 3 3

Kramer (W) 31/3 2 1 0 0 7

Princeton (10-4)

Daughtry 1 3 3 1 2 1

Hinton 3 5 4 4 4 3

Harmon 2 1 0 0 0 1

Pate 2 0 0 0 3 1

Gatewood (L) 1 3 1 1 0 2