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Garrett Rayfield hit a three-run home run in the bottom of the eighth inning to give South Brunswick a 10-9 victory over East Columbus in the Cougars’ first game of the conference baseball season March 24.
South led 7-6 run entering the top of the seventh, but East Columbus took advantage of an error to tie the score. In the top of the eighth, East Columbus scored two runs on errors in taking a 9-7 lead.
In the bottom of the eighth, Robert Jones led off with a hit. Justin Pauley followed with a walk. Rayfield then hit the game-winning home run.
“I’m proud of our no-quit attitude,” coach Lee Shelton said
East Columbus took a two-run lead in the first inning, but South scored three runs in the bottom of the inning.
In the fifth, East Columbus got a three-run home run from Demetrious McKelvie and a solo home run from Brandon Reynolds in taking a 7-3 lead.
South scored twice in the fifth and regained the lead in the bottom of the sixth on a bases-loaded squeeze play by Robert Jones.
Rayfield finished 2-for-4 with the homer and four RBIs. Pauley was 3-for-3 with a double and two RBIs. Ryan Brendle was 2-for-4 with a double and one RBI. Leadoff batter Edward McNeill finished 2-for-4 with two doubles. Jones was 1-for-2 with one RBI and a sacrifice bunt. Brian Wells had a sacrifice bunt.
Jones was the winning pitcher. In two innings he gave up one hit and no earned runs. He walked none, hit one batter and struck out two.
Starter Brian Wells pitched 4 2/3 innings. He gave up three hits and five earned runs. He walked five and struck out six.
John Marvin pitched 1 1/3 innings. He gave up no hits and no runs. He walked two and struck out one.
South Brunswick had 14 hits in a 10-7 victory Friday at Pender in a conference game.
South trailed 6-5 after two innings but scored the game-deciding three runs in the sixth inning.
“I’m proud of how we kept our cool and came back for a good win,” coach Lee Shelton said.
South also took advantage of four Pender errors.
John Marvin hit a two-run home run in the first inning in going 2-for-4 with four RBIs. Edward McNeill was 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs. Robert Jones was 3-for-4 with one RBI. Stephen Frink finished 3-for-4. Ryan Brendle was 2-for-4. Garrett Rayfield doubled. Michael Bryant had three sacrifice bunts. Justin Pauley singled and had one sacrifice bunt.
Winning pitcher Brian Wells gave up one hit and no earned runs in five innings. He walked three and struck out three. He hit three batters. He walked three and struck out one.
Tyler Carlson pitched the final two innings, giving up five hits and six earned runs.
“We had a good night offensively,” Shelton said. “We walked the leadoff batter too many times. We got to start working ahead in the count.”
South, 4-4 overall, plays host to South Columbus at 6 p.m. Friday.