03/21/13 — Saints bounce back from tough ECC road loss

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Saints bounce back from tough ECC road loss

By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on March 21, 2013 1:47 PM

DUDLEY -- A day after a close conference loss, Southern Wayne rediscovered its offense and proved it can win a close ballgame.

Jacob Hollingsworth delivered the go-ahead hit for the Saints and recorded the final out on the mound in a 5-3 non-conference win over Rocky Mount on Wednesday evening.

Clayton Cashwell led Southern Wayne with three hits. Kevin Williams and Thomas Kelly both finished with two hits.

The Saints took the game's first lead with a pair of runs in the bottom of the second inning. Cole Barwick delivered an RBI single and Taylor Raynor added a sacrifice fly.

The Gryphons answered with two runs of their own in the top of the third inning on a run-scoring groundout and a Southern Wayne error that allowed a run to score.

Southern Wayne (6-3 overall) moved back in front 3-2 in the bottom of the third inning on Kelly's squeeze bunt that scored Cashwell.

Rocky Mount tied the game at 3-3 on Micah Varnell's RBI groundout in the top of the fifth inning.

Hollingsworth's two-run single in the home half of the fifth inning gave the Saints the lead for good, 5-3.

"We started to look a little bit more comfortable at the plate," Saints' head coach Trae McKee said. "We've struggled to score runs and a lot of that has to do with confidence and in this game you have to deal with some failure. It was nice to bounce back.

"Jacob got a big hit for us through the infield."

The Gryphons threatened in the top of the seventh inning with runners on second and third base and two outs. Hollingsworth came on in relief and struck out Spencer Ramsey to end the game.

D.J. Skinner earned the win with 2 2/3 innings of one-run relief. Starting pitcher Jackson Hayes surrendered two runs (one earned) on two hits with three strikeouts and no walks in four innings of work.

"Jackson was pretty good for us and he found some velocity," McKee said. "D.J. Skinner did a great job and he was really sharp and Jacob came in and finished it for us."

Southern Wayne visits Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference foe North Lenoir on Friday.