Saints claim 10-inning win over Hawks
By Ryan Hanchett
Published in Sports on April 24, 2013 1:47 PM
DUDLEY -- For the second time this season North Lenoir and Southern Wayne needed extra innings to sort out an Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference baseball game.
The Saints emerged victorious again -- 2-1 -- on a two-out hit in the bottom of the 10th inning Tuesday evening. Southern Wayne (12-9 overall) remained tied with Eastern Wayne and Cleveland for third place at 5-6 in the ECC.
"The guys didn't want me to sugar coat it before the game," Southern Wayne head coach Trae McKee said. "I told them flat out we had to win the last two games to have a chance at the playoffs. Tonight wasn't pretty, but we will take it."
North Lenoir (4-13, 2-9) got on the board in the top of the first inning.
Seth Beard reached on an error and scored when Caleb Baird ripped a double down the left field line.
The one run would be all that the Hawks would get off of Southern Wayne starting pitcher Kevin Williams, who lasted six innings but took a no-decision.
Southern Wayne tied the score at 1-1 in the fourth inning when Jacob Sasser walked and scored on a single from Hunter Barwick.
The next five innings produced several scoring chances but no runs as both teams went to their respective bullpens to keep the game knotted.
Jacob Hollingsworth led off the Saints' half of the 10th inning with a ground ball that was misplayed by the Hawks' infield. Hollingsworth moved to third base on a single off the bat of Cody Wendorf.
After the next two Southern Wayne batters failed to get the winning run in, Thomas Kelly strode to the plate and watched as the first pitch of his at-bat bounced away from the North Lenoir catcher and allowed Hollingsworth to score.
"We had so many chances and could not get a timely hit," McKee said. "We have been battling that all season and tonight was no different. Four times we stranded a runner at third base."
Sasser pitched four innings of sterling relief to get the mound win. The big right-hander struck out eight North Lenoir batters.
"The pitching tonight for both teams was very good," North Lenoir head coach Jim Montague said. "Our guys were excellent and they really battled. Southern Wayne's two guys were just as good."
North Lenoir plays host to Eastern Wayne on Thursday, while Southern Wayne travels to Charles B. Aycock.
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