Lexington scored all 5 of their runs in the first 3 innings and held on to outlast Wando in Game 1 of the Lower State series. In the other Lower State matchup, River Bluff blanked Dutch Fork 5-0. The Wildcats will travel to meet the Gators on Saturday at 1:00. Also on Saturday the Silver Foxes have a date with the Warriors in an elimination game.
With 1 away in the first inning, Chase Crouch reached on a Wando error. Jared Kirven’s sharp hit to third base was good for an infield hit. David Cromer followed with an RBI line drive single to left. The Cats loaded the bases when John Carter was hit by a pitch and Kirven tagged and scored from third on Tristan Allen’s lineout to right field.
Down 2-0, the Warriors answered with a run in the second on a walk, single, balk, and a sacrifice to narrow the gap to 2-1.
Lexington put up what would be the winning runs when 3 Wildcats crossed in the third. The inning opened with an infield error by Wando, putting Jared Kirven on first base. After David Cromer drew a walk, Kirven was forced out advancing to third on John Carter’s bunt that was played perfectly by Tyler Jones, the Warrior pitcher. Consecutive singles by Tristan Allen and Ryan DeRienzo allowed Cromer to score. Three pitches later, Carter crossed home on a passed ball. Allen sprinted home on Cal Herndon’s fielders choice for the final Cat run.
Wando threatened late but managed just 1 run in the fifth on a single and 3 free passes.
Jonathan Howlett recorded his 8th win, pitching 5 innings and allowing 2 earned runs on 6 hits while walking 4 and striking out 10. Ty Watts pitched 1 1/3 innings in relief before making way for Nathan Roof to close the deal and earn a save. Lexington’s season record is now 21-6 and a win Saturday would assure them of hosting the Lower State Final.
Wando 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 2-6-2
Lexington 2 0 3 0 0 0 x 5-7-0
Cal Herndon: 2 for 3, 1 RBI
Noah Huthmaker: 1 for 4
Jared Kirven: 1 for 4, 1 run
David Cromer: 1 for 1, 1 run, 1 RBI
Tristan Allen: 1 for 3, 1 run, 1 RBI
Ryan DeRienzo: 1 for 3, 1 RBI
Chase Crouch: 1 run
John Carter: 1 run