The Halifax County American Legion Post 8 Junior Legion baseball team appears to be peaking at just the right time.
Post 8 defeated Rocky Mount 12-2 in five innings Wednesday night in the team’s final regular-season home game at Halifax County High School to earn its third win in a row and run its season record to 8-6 overall.
With two regular-season games remaining, a doubleheader against Christiansburg at noon Saturday in Christiansburg, Post 8 manager Josh Perkins says the team is in a good place.
“This is big to have three wins in a row,” Perkins pointed out.
“Losing a doubleheader in Roanoke last Saturday and coming back to win three games in a row ought to put us in the top half of the bracket for next week’s district tournament. Winning these games, at the moment, puts us in the top half of the bracket, which will get us a home game Thursday, if we can stay there.”
Wins in Saturday’s doubleheader against Christiansburg could likely assure Post 8 of a home game in the tournament.
“There are a lot of teams bunched up in the middle of the bracket right behind us, and things could still go a lot of ways,” Perkins said.
“If we win out, we won’t lose any ground, and that would get us a home game.”
For the second night in a row, Post 8 generated a big offensive push to overcome an early deficit to win.
Halifax County Post 8 had seven hits in the contest, with Luke Fulcher leading the team with three hits. Jackson Newton had two hits, and Blake Duffer and Gavin Colwell chipped in a hit each.
Post 8 was also able to capitalize on nine walks from Rocky Mount pitchers and three Rocky Mount errors.
Gavin Colwell led Post 8 in RBIs with two. Fulcher and Duffer each had one RBI.
Nathan Comer went to the mound in relief in the first inning, and got the game settled down for Post 8. He went the rest of the way, striking out six batters and allowing just one hit and one walk and allowed no runs.
Rocky Mount got off to a quick start, capitalizing on a walk, a hit and a Post 8 error in the top of the first inning to take a 2-0 lead.
Post 8 answered quickly, plating three runs on a Rocky Mount error that occurred when Kolby Fisher sent a hard-hit ball to centerfield to take the lead at 3-2.
A five-run rally in the bottom of the second inning put Post 8 up 8-2. Kyle Barker and Dylan Newton walked to open the inning, and stole their way over to second base and third base.
A sacrifice fly by Fulcher allowed Barker to score the game-tying run. Comer reached base on a walk. Dylan Newton scored on a wild pitch to give Post 8 a 4-3 lead. After that, the big play of the inning came when two runs scored when Fisher reached base on an error, a play that gave Post 8 its six-run edge.
Post 8 scored two more runs in the third inning, with Dylan Newton scoring on a wild pitch and Fulcher scoring when Duffer reached base on an error, with the pair of runs giving Post 8 a 10-2 lead.
Halifax County Post 8 sealed the win in the bottom of the fifth inning when Fulcher got a hit and later scored on a passed ball and Colwell came up with a walk-off double to score Jackson Newton who had reached base with a double prior to Colwell coming to the plate.