Cherryville knocks off Post 29
Caldwell County Post 29 suffered its third conference loss of the season after dropping an 8-4 decision at the hands of Cherryville Post 100 on Sunday in Cherryville.
"We just played bad baseball all the way around," said Caldwell head coach Brandon Banks. "Offensively, we hit the ball okay, but we didn't produce. We didn't play well defensively either and that's not our brand of baseball."
The 29ers are now 14-4 overall and 8-3 in the Area IV Western Division. Meanwhile, Cherryville improves to 7-7 overall, 6-3 in the same division.
Post 29 took its first and only lead of the game in the top half of the third inning. Aaron Moore got on base with a single and Nick Horning followed with his first of two doubles in the game. Trevor Beane then hit a sacrifice fly to center field to score Moore. Horning came in to score soon after on a successful, double-steal play to take a 2-0 advantage.
In the bottom of the fourth, Cherryville sent all nine batters to the plate, scoring three runs. Dalton Towery led off with a walk and Brett Huff followed with a single. Two batters later, Hunter Jackson hit a two-run single to center to tie the game. Post 100 took a 3-2 lead moments later after Clay Fuller walked and Cody Dellinger drove in Jackson with an RBI single to center.
Caldwell tied the game in the top of the fifth. Moore hit a leadoff single and Horning hit his second double of the game. Moore scored on an RBI bunt single by Beane. Beane was later caught stealing and Cherryville got out of the inning with no further damage done.
This was just one instance of Post 29 leaving runners on base. The 29ers stranded a total of 10 base runners in the game, seven of which were in scoring position.
"You can't do that and expect to win against a team like Cherryville," Banks said. "You have to get hits when they count and we didn't do that. Any time you leave runners on base it will come back to bite you."
Cherryville re-claimed the lead in the bottom half of the fifth with an unearned run. Brett Huff reached on an error and later scored on a single to center by Jackson.
Post 29 tied the game once again in the seventh. Horning led off with a walk and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Beane. AJ Watson singled to put runners on the corners. Horning scored on another successful double steal and Watson moved over to third on a throwing error by Post 100. However, Watson was left stranded on third.
In the bottom of the seventh, Huff was hit by a pitch and Brandon Alexander singled. Jackson picked up his fourth RBI of the game with an RBI single to score Huff. An errant throw by Caldwell allowed the runners to move to second and third. Fuller then delivered with a two-run single to make the score 7-4. Two batters later, Caleb Narron hit an RBI double to right, scoring Fuller. Narron was thrown out at third on the play.
Another problem for the 29ers was the amount of base runners they gave Post 100. Caldwell pitchers combined to walk nine Cherryville batters, while hitting another two.
"We gave them too many free passes," Banks said. "We walked a bunch of guys, hit a couple and made errors in the field. You're not going to win too many games doing that."
Caldwell did not threaten in eighth inning and left two runners stranded in the ninth.
Post 29 enters its final stretch of the regular with five games in the next six days, beginning with a home game against Haywood County on Tuesday. The first pitch is slated for 7 p.m.
Caldwell 002 - 010 - 100 - 4-9-3
Cherryville 000 - 310 - 40x - 8-9-2
Winning pitcher: Derrick Brawn (2.1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K). Losing pitcher: Luke Watts (1.2 IP, 4 H, 4 R, 4 ER, 2 BB, 1 HB, 2 K).
Leading hitters: Caldwell - Nick Horning 3-4, 2 2B, BB, 2 R, 2 SB; Aaron Moore 2-4, 2 R; Trevor Beane 1-2, 2 RBIs. Cherryville - Hunter Jackson 3-5, 4 RBIs, 2 R; Brett Huff 1-3, BB, HBP, 3 R; Caleb Narron 1-3, 2B, 2 BB, SB, RBI.