THOMASVILLE — Luke Pritchett spread six hits over six innings and helped his own cause by driving in three runs as High Point Post 87 defeated Eastern Randolph 6-1 on Finch Field July 9 in Game One …
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THOMASVILLE — Luke Pritchett spread six hits over six innings and helped his own cause by driving in three runs as High Point Post 87 defeated Eastern Randolph 6-1 on Finch Field July 9 in Game One of the best three-of-five American Legion Area III second round playoff series.
High Point climbed to 17-11 for the season, while Post 81 fell to 5-20.
In gaining the win, Pritchett gave up one unearned run while walking one and fanning five. Trey Jackson came on to pitch the final frame, allowing one hit.
Pritchett and Isaiah Hairston collected two hits apiece to lead Post 87 at the plate.
“After struggling in the first inning, Pritchett settled down and got a lot of ground balls and pop flies while the defense did its job behind him,” said High Point coach Rob Shore. “Pritchett has done a good job driving in runs all year,while we managed to capitalize on a few Eastern Randolph mistakes in the form of a balk, hit batter and dropped fly ball to get people in scoring position and then bring them home.”
Post 81 starter Jacob Underwood hurled five innings and suffered the loss after surrendering six hits along with five earned runs in addition to issuing three free passes and striking out one.
Eastern Randolph’s Kevin Cano tossed one inning in relief and yielded one unearned run while walking one and whiffing one.
“We just couldn’t get the big two-out hits we needed with guys on base,” said Post 81 coach Brian Heilig. “The little mistakes we make came back to haunt us once again. If we could limit miscues and string hits together instead of spacing them out we put ourselves right in the game.”
Eastern Randolph grabbed a 1-0 advantage in the top of the first as Mason Canoy reached on a two-out infield hit and continued to second on an overthrow at first before tallying on Zander Smith’s double up the alley in right-center.
Post 87 came right back to tie the score in its half of the frame as Hairston drew a full-count base on balls with two away and was balked to second prior to coming home when Pritchett notched a single to center.
High Point plated three runs in the bottom of the third to seize the lead for good as Chet Sikes was plunked with a pitch with one away before back-to-back base hits by Jackson and Hairston filled the sacks.
Pritchett followed with a two-run single to left to drive in Sikes and Jackson prior to Carson Shetley reaching on a fielder’s choice as Hairston advanced to third.
Shetley then broke for second to draw a throw from Post 81 catcher Chris Morgan, and when he became trapped in a rundown Hairston alertly stole home before Shetley was eventually tagged out.
Post 87 extended its advantage to 5-1 with one away in the home fourth when Avery Cain walloped a first-pitch offering from Underwood over the left field fence for his second home run of the year.
High Point proceeded to wrap up the scoring in the bottom of the sixth as Avery Adams dashed all the way to second when his one-out fly ball to left was dropped and stole third prior to coming home on Gavyn Byrd’s sacrifice fly to center.