Wildcat Homers Doom O'Neal Falcons
The Falcons battled tooth-and-nail for four innings with Westchester Country Day Friday before dropping a 14-6 decision to the Wildcats.
Earlier this season Westchester defeated the Falcons by the 10-run mercy rule in a game in which the Falcons had only one hit.
Friday's rematch was a different story.
O'Neal (1-8) banged out 11 hits, and had a chance to take the lead in the sixth, before it succumbed to the Wildcats thanks to a barrage of home runs.
Trailing 9-6 in the bottom of the sixth inning, the Falcons loaded the bases with one out on two hits a fielder's choice ground out and a walk to bring Devin Roberts to the plate.
Roberts had reached base all three previous plate appearances with a walk and two singles. He scalded a low line-drive that appeared ticketed for left field, but the Westchester third baseman reached out and made the catch for the second out and easily turned a double play to end the inning.
"Devin hit a seed," Peal said. "I thought it was through (the infield for a hit), but he (defender) made a great play. Sometimes you hit the ball where there aren't, sometimes you hit the ball where they are. That's baseball."
Westchester had only eight hits, but five were home runs.
Wildcat Jared Brown hit the first of his two home runs in the fifth -- a three-run blast with one out -- to give the Wildcats an 8-4 lead. Alex Embler followed with a solo shot to make it 9-4.
The Wildcats secured the win with five runs in the seventh on a grand slam by Mickey Williard and a solo shot by Brown. The first Wildcat homer was a three-run blast by Zach Gilliland in the fourth inning that gave the Wildcats a 4-3 lead.
Jordan Hunt and Devin Roberts scored first-inning runs and John Schoemmell drove in Roberts with a sacrifice fly in the third to give the Falcons a 3-1 lead.
Jordan Hunt drove in Dante Delguerico with an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth to tie the score, 4-all.
Delguerico had three hits, Roberts and Derek Ailerson added two hits each and Schoemmell had two RBIs for the Falcons.
"I am extremely please with out we are progressing," Peal said. "We are doing the little things right that we've been focusing on in practice. We've worked a lot on hitting and today we had 11 hits. It's nice for our guys to see the fruits of their labor, but at the same time it sure would be nice to find a way to win."
Falcons Drop Game to Harrell's
The O'Neal Falcons baseball team dropped a 7-3 decision to Harrell's Academy on Thursday despite a strong start from pitcher Witt Redinger.
Redinger kept the opposing lineup in check for four innings and took a 3-2 advantage into the fifth inning. In the fifth, Harrell's capitalized on a few errors to take the lead. Trailing 3-2 with two outs, Harrell's scored the tying run on a bobbled grounder and then took the lead for good on a two-run double. Another error allowed two more runs.
Jay Lassiter had two RBIs for the Falcons.
Harrell's defeated O'Neal 13-1 earlier this year.
"This game was a testament to how hard our guys have been working to get better," said Falcons coach Matt Peal. "We are a much better team than when the season started."
The Falcons will be back in action on Monday at Tuesday with road games against Village Christian Academy and Fayetteville Academy. O'Neal returns home Thursday for a 4:30 p.m. game against Fayetteville Christian. Prior to that game the teams will complete a suspended game beginning at 2:30 p.m.
Contact Tom Embrey at 693-2477 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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