Boiling Springs Takes Game Two Over Rebels
After Boiling Springs won the series opener on Monday night at BUrnes 9-4, game 2 of this crucial region 2-5A series had to wait an additional day thanks to the wet weather on Wednesday. The 2 met at Bulldog Park Thursday night for a late nightcap to a JV/Varsity Double Header, with the varsity game starting at 8:00.
Ordinarily, an 8:00 start means pushing 11:00 or later leaving the yard. But, not in a pitching battle like this turned out to be.
Boiling Springs sent Junior Kyle Dill to the hill, and he was more the King of the Hill in this game than Hank.
Dill carried a perfect game into the 5th inning with 5 of his first 12 outs coming via a pop fly to the outfield. In the first 4 innings, he faced the minimum. In the top of the 3rd, he got the Rebels in order on just 4 pitches. He would go on to get the first 2 outs of the top of the 4th on 4 pitches before finishing the 3 up 3 down frame with a fly ball for a can o’ corn to Luke Compton in center on 5 pitches.
Byrnes finally got their first base runner with 1 out in the 5th via a single from 2nd Baseman Connor Crenshaw. He went on to advance to 3rd on a stolen base and a passed ball, but was left there as Dill rebounded by getting a flyout to center from Byrnes Shortstop Brayden Price and striking out Left Fielder Harrison Keels.
The Rebels’ pitching was not extraordinarily sharp in this game, but somehow managed to make this a battle down to the late innings, playing well on Boiling Springs’ 2 biggest offensive weaknesses thus far – base running, and leaving runners on base.
Rylee Douglas led off the home half of the first inning with a single and was picked off a few pitches later when he was caught too far off the bag. Jackson Cole drew a walk with 2 out, but he was left aboard as Luke Compton grounded to 1st unassisted to end the inning.
The Bulldogs worked the bases loaded in the home 2nd with a Jackson Reel single and back to back walks to Corben Childers and Landon Stevens. They were all left on after Titus Hutchins was rung up looking and Rylee Douglas tried to lay down a safety squeeze, but pushed it too far right back to the base of the mound to be gunned out 1-3.
Boiling Springs left a runner in each of the next 2 innings (making for a total of 6) and had another runner picked off at 1st in the bottom of the 4th before they finally broke through in the 5th.
Justin Dawkins got things started with a 1 out double to the right field corner. After Jackson Cole had Boiling Springs fans thinking “Here we go again” with a K on 3 pitches, Luke Compton delivered by smoking a sinking line drive to center. Byrnes Center Fielder Nic Degler came over and made a sliding effort at it, but it kicked off the heel of his glove and rolled all the way into shallow right field to give Compton an easy RBI double. Hudson Wilson followed that up with a single to drive home Compton, giving the Bulldogs the 2-0 advantage heading to the 6th despite leaving yet another runner on.
Byrnes finally managed to break through off Kyle Dill in the ensuing half inning. Rebel Catcher Jake Short led off the top of the 6th with a single. He was erased 4-6 on a fielder’s choice off the bat of DH Noah McGarrity. Nic Degler bunted McGarrity into scoring position to set the stage for right fielder Jaxson Camp to single him home before being erased trying to take 2nd on the throw home 7-2-4 to retire the side.
Boiling Springs would leave yet another runner in scoring position in the bottom of the 6th when Titus Hutchins was hit by a pitch and stole 2nd with 2 out prior to Rylee Douglas popping up to the 2nd baseman. In total, the Bulldogs left 8 runners on the basepaths, but it would not make for an issue in this game.
Mason Shuford and Jackson Reel combined to shut out the Rebels with 1 hit and a strikeout over the final half inning to lock up the series win and the 2-1 victory for the Bulldogs.
Boiling Springs was led at the plate by Luke Compton, who went 2 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored. Hudson Wilson was the 2nd leading hitter, going 1-3 with an RBI. Justin Dawkins was also 1 for 3 on the night with a run scored.
On the mound, Kyle Dill picked up the win, with a final line of 6 innings, 2 hits, an earned run, and 4 strikeouts.
Byrnes was led by Jaxson Camp, going 1 for 3 with the Rebs’ lone RBI. Connor Crenshaw was also strong with a 2-3 effort.
The Rebels will look to salvage the finale on Friday night, with first pitch set for 7:30 at Byrnes.