TABOR CITY – An 8-run first inning explosion propelled South Columbus to a 16-9 Three Rivers Conference baseball victory over West Bladen Friday night.
The Knights grabbed an early 2-0 lead in the top of the first. Senior Dalton Pait reached base on an error then advanced on another error and a wild pitch. Senior Shawn Oxendine drove in Dalton Pait with a sacrifice fly. Junior Nolan Bryant hammered a double to leftfield and raced home when junior Logan West smashed a single to right.
The Stallions used 3 hits, 3 Knight errors and 3 walks to score their 8 runs in the bottom of the inning. Trey Gore and Ethan Kennedy belted 2-run singles in the inning.
Dalton Pait walloped a triple to rightfield in the Knight second inning that scored junior Braylon Williamson who had walked and trimmed the South lead to 8-3.
Oxendine was hit by a pitch to begin the Knight third inning, and Bryant ripped a single to centerfield. Logan West walked, and junior Dawson Bryan was hit by a pitch to force home Oxendine. Senior Jeremy Pait slammed a double to left that scored Bryant and Logan West and sliced the Stallion lead to 8-6.
Rajon Graham tripled and Kennedy doubled to key a 5-run Stallion fifth inning that included 3 Knight errors and a passed third strike as the lead grew to 13-6.
Oxendine was hit by a pitch, and Bryant walked in the Knight sixth, and Logan West drove in Oxendine with a single.
A single, a walk, an error and a fielder’s choice produced 3 more South runs in the home sixth to pad the lead to 16-7.
Jeremy Pait reached base on an error to begin the West Bladen seventh, and Dalton Pait and freshman Kaiden Stanley drew walks. Alex Brisson reached base on an error that scored Derrick Long, the pinch-runner for Jeremy Pait. Bryant walked to force home Dalton Pait.
Bryant batted 2-3 with a double, a run batted in and 2 runs scored to lead the Knight hitters. Logan West finished 2-4 at the plate with 2 rbi’s and a run scored. Dalton Pait finished with an rbi triple and 2 runs scored. Bryan doubled, had an rbi and scored twice. Jeremy Pait doubled home 2 runs, and Williamson singled and scored a run. Oxendine had an rbi, and Long scored a run.
Freshman Devon Strange pitched the first inning and allowed 8 runs – 4 earned – on 3 hits and 4 walks while striking out one. Junior Colby White relieved and worked 4 innings allowing 5 unearned runs on 2 hits while striking out five. Stanley pitched an inning and allowed 3 runs – one earned – on a hit and a walk.
Kennedy batted 2-4 with 3 rbi’s and a double. Graham tripled and drove in 4 runs. Anondre Ganus, the third of 5 Stallion pitchers, picked up the win.
West Bladen will travel to East Bladen Tuesday night.