- Last Updated on 05:02 PM 06/13/13
- BY Joe Chandler
Understandably, there was some disappointment in the South Boston American Legion Post 8 Junior Legion baseball team dugout.
Trailing 12-5 and appearing to be out of contention in Wednesday night’s game against the Danville Post 325 senior Legion team at Halifax County High School, Post 8 exploded to score seven runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to send the game into extra innings, only to fall to Danville Post 325 14-12 in eight innings.
“Overall, the effort was there,” Post 8 Head Coach Jody Nelson pointed out after the loss that dropped his team’s record to 1-1 on the season.
“We never give up. That’s a credit to Halifax year after year. No kid that has played for me and this coaching staff has ever given up. As long as you don’t quit and you try to stay in it, you give yourself a chance.”
While Post 8 came up on the short end of the game that took over three hours to complete and featured explosive offensive bursts that resulted in a total of 26 runs scored between the two teams, it was a solid effort nonetheless.
The effort was more noteworthy because it was against a senior Legion ballclub.
“I never expect to come in here and lose,” Nelson said.
“They (Danville Post 325) probably had us out-gunned across the board. But our guys played well enough as a unit and kept the fight up and kept us in the game.”
Post 8 had 10 hits in the contest, with Tripp Bennett leading the team with a 3-5 night at the plate that included two doubles and three RBIs. Tristan Howerton and Will Harris had two hits each, with Howerton plating two runners and Harris plating one.
Javon Smith, Michael Watts and Holt Powell had a hit each.
Six of the team’s hits came in the bottom of the seventh inning when Post 8 scored seven runs to tie the game at 12-12 and send the game into extra innings. Holt Powell’s two-RBI single with the bases loaded and nobody out gave Post 8 its first two runs in the late rally.
Howerton followed with a single that scored a run and a second run scored on an overthrow on an
attempt to nail Howerton scampering for second base, making the score 12-9.
Harris reached base on an error that resulted in another run scoring for Post 8 to make the score 12-10. However, Harris was thrown out at third base while attempting to put himself into position to score another run for the team.
Smith walked, and a double from Watts plated Smith to put Post 8 within a run at 12-11. A two-out double from Bennett scored Watts to deadlock the game at 12-12.
After the game, Nelson took the blame for Harris getting thrown out at third base and taking what could have potentially been a game-winning run off of the basepaths.
“I ran us out of that inning,” Nelson pointed out.
“It was my fault. This goes on me. I was just over zealous and tried to get third base and get into a bunt situation.”
Danville Post 325 tagged South Boston Post 8 relief hurler Andrew Abbott for two runs in the top of the eighth inning, with a two-RBI double from Dallas Smithers being the hit that put the visitors over the top.
Post 8 failed to score in the bottom of the inning, ending the game.
The seventh inning wasn’t the only time Post 8 rallied from behind.
Trailing 2-0 after the first half inning of the game, Post 8 took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the first inning with a walk to Watts that forced in a run, and a two-RBI double by Bennett that put South Boston on top 3-2.
Danville regained the lead at 6-3 with four runs in the top of the fifth inning, half of them coming on a two-run homer by Andrew Bran, who led Danville Post 325 with a 3-4 effort at the plate that included three RBIs.
The visitors led 12-3 after five and a half innings only to see Post 8 score nine unanswered runs to get back into the game.