A late inning rally by Lancaster Post 31 dampened an otherwise good week for Fort Mill Post 43.
The American Legion team from Fort Mill took the series from Lancaster two games to one, but fell in the series final 5-4 after Lancaster scored three runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to steal the win.
“We were up entering the bottom of the seventh and had two outs but weren't able to close it out,” said Post 43 head coach Tom Skula. “That's a tough loss that we will learn from, but we will take the series win. We need to move on and focus on the York series.”
Fort Mill heads into a crucial three-game series against York Post 66 this week needing to get back on track in effort to clinch a playoff spot. Only the top two teams in the league secure a playoff spot. Heading into Monday, Post 43 led the League V standings with a 7-2 record overall, including 6-2 in league play.
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Unlike the first two games of the Lancaster series, game three was a lot closer from the onset. Post 43 had just four hits in the game and Noah Griffin pitched six and two-thirds of six-hit baseball, while getting the no decision.
Post 43 unloaded in the sixth inning, scoring three runs on a couple of hits as Justin Kerosetz had a two run single to put Fort Mill ahead 4-2. Alex Stennett also hit a key RBI double in the fourth inning to help put Fort Mill on the board.
“The first two games we had great at bats, played solid defense, got on base, and scored a lot of runs,” Skula said. “We weren't able to do that in game three. Noah pitched a great game for us. He really showed his bulldog mentality all night and he was pounding the strike zone in game three.”
Lancaster was able to score three runs on four hits in the bottom of the seventh inning all with two outs to seal the comeback.
Fort Mill won the first game of the series, 8-3, but struggled in the field throughout the series, averaging three errors a game. In the first game, Post 43 was led at the plate by Bartow Keller, Greg Izzo and Kerosetz, all of who went 2-4. Kerosetz drove in two runs and Joey Tepper hit a solo home run in the third inning.
Logan Stone got the win on the mound going four innings and allowing three runs on seven hits. Griffin pitched two strong innings of relief, before Tepper closed the game out in the seventh.
Game two was more of an offensive explosion for Post 43 as they scattered a dozen hits in the 13-6 win. Keller, Tepper and Izzo all went 2-4 as Izzo drove in three runs and Tepper drove in two. Stennett was a perfect 3-3 at the plate and reached base in all five plate appearances.
Indian Land’s Trey Boyd pitched four innings for the win allowing just two hits while striking out five in the win.