Goldsboro starting pitcher Dalton Wilkins works to strike out a Spring Creek batter as he throws the ball toward the plate.

The Goldsboro Cougars defeated the Spring Creek Gators 9-6 on Tuesday night.

The Gators took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning with an RBI single from Cole Honeycutt that scored Campbell Cunningham.

The Cougars answered right back in the bottom of the inning with two runs and took a 2-1 lead.

Goldsboro scored the first run on an error that allowed Dalton Wilkins to come home after his teammate Lexton Lewis hit a ball in play that a Spring Creek infielder made a throwing error on. The next run was scored when Lewis came home from third after a wild pitch.

In the top of the second inning, the Gators evened the score back up at 2-2 when Cunningham hit an RBI double that scored Dylan Davidson from second base.

In the third inning, the Gators offense continued to roll, and they scored three runs in the inning to take a 5-2 lead.

The first came when Davidson hit an RBI double that scored Andrew Crumpler. The next run came when the bases were loaded, and Douglas Davidson took a four-pitch walk that brought David Williams in to score from third base. The third run of the inning came when Will Ervin was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded.

The game was going in favor of the Gators when they scored again in the top of the fourth inning off a fielding error by the Goldsboro defense to take a 6-2 lead.

Goldsboro didn’t give up and put together a three-run inning in the bottom of the fourth to cut the lead to one run. The first two runs came off Spring Creek fielding errors, and the third run of the inning came off an RBI single by Lewis that scored Evan Cummings.

After not allowing a run in the top of the fifth, the Cougars sealed the victory in the bottom of the fifth inning by scoring four runs.

The first run came from Braxton Morton who stole home plate to tie the game. The run that gave Goldsboro the lead came when Trey Adams hit an RBI single to score Drake Ennis. Rain began to pour, and Goldsboro scored two more runs before the game was called. Because the teams already played more than four and a half innings, by rule Goldsboro was given the win.

Goldsboro head coach Danny Merritt said everyone on the team played a part in the comeback from a four-run deficit.

“It was a great team effort,” Merritt said. “They didn’t give up. In the first game (against Wallace-Rose Hill) they just folded. We didn’t hit. We made errors, and we didn’t throw strikes. Everybody made up their mind (to make a comeback), and we had great senior leadership.

“The seniors went out tonight and they threw strikes. (Peyton Wilkins) went out there tonight and kept us in the game. Everyone in the lineup battled with two strikes. All the way through the lineup we kept putting ball in play and making them play defense, and that was huge.”

With the win, Goldsboro improves to 2-1 overall and 2-1 in the East Central 2A Conference. Spring Creek falls to 1-2 overall and 1-2 in the conference with the loss.

Goldsboro will play Spring Creek again on Friday in Seven Springs.