J.H. Rose baseball takes Game 1 as errors pile up for Cox Mill
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (HSOT) — It was hard to look clean playing in a drizzly J.P. Riddle Stadium in Fayetteville, but one team played a much cleaner game than the other.
That’s why J.H. Rose took Game 1 of the N.C. High School Athletic Association 3A baseball championship series, as the Rampants won 8-1 over Cox Mill early Saturday afternoon.
While Cox Mill (15-4) piled up errors (four), hit-by-pitches, wild pitches, and even got caught in a pickle, Rose didn’t have nearly the number of issues. Starting pitcher Lee Watson pitched a 122-pitch complete game, allowing one earned run and strikeout seven while walking just one.
The Rampants will take a 1-0 lead into Game 2, which is scheduled to start Sunday at 1 p.m.
J.H. Rose (15-4) struck first in the top of the second inning as Caleb May lifted a double over the right fielder’s head to bring home Cam Greenway.
May later scored in a wild pitch and A.J. Briley scored on a dropped third strike to make it 3-0 after two innings.
Cox Mill starter Marty Gair threw 40 pitches in the inning but struck out four batters.
It was that kind of outing for Gair, a UNC-Wilmington recruit and likely MLB Draft pick. Through three innings he had nine strikeouts, two HBPs, three walks, and three wild pitches.
For the game he had 11 total strikeouts, and was removed after four innings as Brant Mosshart pitched the last two.
A double from Jayden Grimes in the bottom of the fourth made it 4-0 as Danny Sadler scored, and an infield error allowed Grimes to score later in the inning to make it 5-0.
Cox Mill, which had seven hits in the contest, got on the board at last in the top of the fifth as Nick Alderfer’s double to right scored pinch hitter Jack Lopez, who reached on a fielder’s choice, to make it 5-1.
But Rose had more runs to come, scoring two in the bottom of the fifth: Grimes was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded and Ryker Galaska was walked with the bases loaded.
The final Rampants run came in the bottom of the sixth, as Cox Mill’s fifth error allowed Briley to score.
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