East Bladen 10, E. E. Smith 0
FAYETTEVILLE – Ty Watkins pitched a five-inning, one-hit shutout Saturday to lead East Bladen to a 10-0 baseball victory over E. E. Smith in the opening round of the J. Hoyt Warren-Wayne Edwards Invitational at Douglas Byrd High School.
Watkins struck out seven and walked one. The sophmore lefthander retired the side in order in 4 of the 5 innings to pick up his first win of the season. He is now 1-0.
In the Golden Bull third inning, A. Downer drew a one-walk, stole second and raced home on Aaron Brown’s 2-out single. However Downer missed the plate and was called out to end the inning.
Sophmores Sincere Smith and Greyson Heustess drew walks to begin the East Bladen first inning. Smith scooted home on junior Kyle Tatum’s infield hit. Heustess and Tatum moved up on a wild pitch, and raced home when Watkins lined a 2-run single to rightfield for a 3-0 Eagle lead.
Tatum was plunked by a pitch with one-out in the East Bladen third. Senior Nikita Owens was safe on an error and both runners advanced on a passed ball. Watkins’ grounder plated Tatum, and sophmore Xavier Wooten knocked in Owens with a single to right that pushed the lead to 5-0.
Sophmore Quinton Bedsole smacked a single to centerfield to start the Eagle fourth. Bedsole advanced on a pair of wild pitches and darted home when the catcher’s throw to third sailed into leftfield.
Sophmore Deondre Newkirk drew a walk, stole second base, moved up on a wild pitch and scored when Tatum belted a single to right-centerfield that stretched the East lead to 7-0.
The Eagles ended the game on the mercy rule with 3 runs in the fifth. Watkins blasted a triple into the rightfield corner, and Wooten slapped a single off of the secondbaseman’s glove that scored freshman Pierce Melvin, the courtesy runner for Watkins.
Senior Alex Coates beat out an infield hit, and sophmore Devan Stocks cracked a single to centerfield to load the bases. Smith swatted a double down the rightfield line that drove in Wooten and Coates and ended the game.
Tatum and Wooten both batted a perfect 2-2 and drove in 2 runs each. Watkins finished 2-3 at the plate with a triple and 3 runs batted in.
Smith delivered the 2-run double and scored a run. Coates, Bedsole and Stocks connected for one hit each. Tatum scored 2 runs, and Bedsole, Wooten, Coates, Owens, Heustess, Newkirk and Melvin scored one run each.
Coach Russell Priest’s Eagles improve to 6-2 on the season and advance to play Scotland on Monday at 7 p.m. Scotland defeated Douglas Byrd 12-2 on Saturday.