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Halifax County, now 15-5, pestered Dan River with relentless hustle en route to a 54-42 win.
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Season ends for baseball, softball
SoVaNow.com / June 04, 2014Freedom-South Riding slammed the door on the state tournament hopes for the Halifax County High School varsity baseball team last night, defeating the Comets 7-2 at home.
Halifax's season is over.
With a state tournament berth on the line, the Comets whiffed on early opportunities and made some costly mistakes, and the visitors took advantage.
This was also the final game in Comet blue for head coach Kelvin Davis, who is moving into the HCHS administration.
Freedom finished with seven runs on eight hits, without an error. HCHS finished with one run on seven hits with two errors.
Comet starter Andrew Abbott ran into trouble in the top of the first.
Freedom picked up two runs on a well-hit shot by Jack Lerch.
Ryan Powell walked in the bottom of the first. Andrew McCann delivered a perfect bunt, easily advancing Powell to second. McCann beat the throw to first.
However, the threat later died when the Comets got caught up in a double play executed perfectly by Freedom.
Abbott got some help from his defense in top of the second, as Dustin Crews made a throw to Thomas Cole at first to get the final out of the inning.
Crews socked a double into left to start the Comet second inning. Cole was hit by a pitch. Tyler Stephens advanced both runners on a short dribbler.
Ethan Woltz walked to load the bases with one out. Tripp Bennett lofted an RBI sacrifice fly to get Crews home. Crews slid at home and beat the tag. The inning ended with two Comets left on base. Freedom's Jake Anderson singled to lead off the top of the third, but was forced at second. Abbott got the final out of the inning, cleanly fielding a bunt by Tyler Pannell.
The Comets got another threat going when McCann belted a leadoff two-bagger to start the Comet third. Will Harris beat out a tricky shot to third, putting two runners on with no outs. But Halifax made two costly baserunning mistakes to end the threat.
Abbott was relieved by Chase Wilkerson in the fourth, and the Comet reliever did the job by keeping Freedom from padding its lead. Crews fielded a grounder at third and threw to Cole to end a potentially troublesome situation for Halifax.
Tyler Stephens cracked a two-out single in the bottom of the fourth, but was forced at second to end the inning.
Freedom got a runner into scoring position at second in the top of the fifth. An excellent two-out bunt by Pannell and savvy baserunning by the visitors extended their lead to 3-1.
With Freedom threatening again, Davis brought in Bennett to try to stem the tide. Bennett kept Freedom from creating nore trouble.
Halifax went quietly in the bottom of the fifth.
Halifax then ran into more trouble. The Eagles added a pair of runs in the frame.
Freedom extended its lead to 4-1 in the top of the sixth on a timely RBI hit by Kyle Wright. With Freedom moving aggressively around the bases, the visitors added another run on a wild pitch.
Crews reached on a two-out throwing error in the bottom of the sixth, but Freedom leftfielder Trent Gilmore made an excellent sliding catch to end the inning.
Freedom added another run in the top of the seventh. Later, a Comet error helped Freedom add another run before the frame ended.
Halifax got a run home in its final at-bat in the bottom of the seventh on a wild pitch. Ethan Woltz doubled and Ryan Powell reached on an error, and Woltz lumbered home on a Freedom pitch gone awry.
HCHS SOFTBALL: The Comets dropped a bitter 6-5 defeat on the road to Briar Woods, ending their season as well.
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