FAYETTEVILLE – A 3-run fourth-inning rally carried Pinecrest to a 4-3 victory over East Bladen Saturday in the opening round of the Bulldog Baseball Easter Tournament.
Nick Phan’s bases-loaded walk forced home a Pinecrest run in the second inning.
The Eagles tied the game in the third inning. Senior Greyson Heustess led off with a single, and senior Shy Pone beat out a bunt single. Senior Dan Tatum lined a single to right field that scored Heustess with the tying run.
The Patriots bunched 4 hits, a hit batsman and a sacrifice fly to score 3 runs in the fourth inning and take a 4-1 lead.
Heustess drew a lead-off walk in the Eagle seventh inning, and Pone reached base on an error. Sophomore Freddy Wooten reached base on a fielder’s choice that retired Pone. Heustess scored to trim the margin to 4-2, and Wooten stole third base and raced home on an error to trim the lead to 4-3.
Junior Gabe Barber batted 2-4 to lead the Eagle hitters. Sophomore Zach Meares smashed a double. Heustess, Pone, sophomore Brady Hollingsworth, Tatum and senior Josh McKoy added one hit each to the East Bladen attack. Tatum drove in a run. Heustess scored 2 runs, and Wooten scored one.
Wooten pitched the first 3 innings for the Eagles and allowed an unearned run on 2 hits and 2 walks. Senior Pierce Melvin worked 3 innings of relief and gave up 3 runs on 7 hits while striking out one.
Senior Davis Wilson pitched the first 6 innings for the Patriots to pick up the win allowing a run on 8 hits while striking out four. Jacob Zimmerman pitched the seventh inning and allowed 2 unearned runs.
Sophomore R. J. Sales batted 2-3 and scored 2 runs for the Patriots. Junior Logan Davidson finished 2-3 at the plate. Zimmerman batted 2-4 with a run batted in. Elliot Embler added an rbi single.
The Eagles, now 13-4, will play West Bladen Monday at 1 p.m. in the consolation bracket.