The Northwestern Trojans played small ball and manufactured two runs in the seventh inning Wednesday night to pull out a 5-3 win against the South Pointe Stallions in the Region 3-AAAA opener for both teams. The game was postponed due to Tuesday’s rain and was played in blustery, cold conditions at South Pointe High School.
Both teams were coming off good performances in weekend tournaments, as Northwestern swept four games to take the Baseball at the Beach tournament at Myrtle Beach. The Trojans are now 5-0 to start the season.
“South Pointe’s a very good ballclub and (coach Jason Terry) has done a very good job over here,” Northwestern coach Mitch Walters said. “We’re happy to get out of here with a win. It’s a tough night, weather-wise.”
Dupree Hart, who had reached on an error and scored in the Trojans’ fifth-inning, game-tying rally, led off the top of the seventh with an infield hit on a slow roller to the third base side of the pitcher’s mound. Heath Sumwalt bunted him to second and Josh Crump, who reached base all four times, laid a perfect bunt down the third-base line for a base hit. With runners at the corners, Coach Walters sent Crump and the throw to second was mishandled by sophomore shortstop Austin Harrigan, allowing Hart to score the go-ahead run from third as the ball rolled into centerfield. Crump had also scored the Trojans’ third run of the game in the fifth when the throw at first got away on Cam Norwood’s grounder to short.
“We had our two best base-runners on,” Walters said. “I was playing for one and we got two.”
The second and final run scored on a Norwood fielder’s choice to short when Norwood beat the relay to first on the attempted double play. Norwood drove in the first and the final runs of the game. His run-scoring double over the left-fielder’s head in the first plated Sumwalt for a 1-0 lead. Norwood also got the complete-game victory on the mound. He allowed three runs while striking out six and walking one. Norwood retired 13 of the last 14 batters he faced after the Stallions took a 3-1 third-inning lead.
Twin brothers Nick and Colby Robbins each had RBIs in the third. Colby’s came on a bunt, and Nick scored the third run on Harrigan’s base hit to stake the Stallions (2-3) to a 3-1 lead. South Pointe sophomore pitcher Ethan Hinson went the distance and allowed only two earned runs.
Northwestern 5, South Pointe 3
|NW||1||0||0||0||2||0||2 - 5||5||2|
|SP||0||0||0||0||3||0||0 - 3||6||4|
Ethan Hinson; Cam Norwood. WP - Norwood. LP - Hinson. 2B - Crump, Norwood (NW).
Leading hitters - South Pointe: Troy Rawls 2-4, run scored. Northwestern: Josh Crump 3-3, 2B, BB, 2 R.
Records: Northwestern 5-0, 1-0 Region 3-AAAA; South Pointe 2-3, 0-1.