Post 87 HiToms rally in opener
The Post 87 HiToms, as they have most of the playoffs, scored runs when they needed them.
After allowing Wayne County to score five runs in the top of the sixth, they answered with seven in the bottom half and held on to win 11-8 on Friday at Lexington’s Holt-Moffitt Field to begin their American Legion state tournament.
They will play Shelby, which beat Hope Mills 3-1, on Saturday at 4:30 p.m. in Lexington.
“I felt confident in the way we swing,” Post 87 coach Rob Shore said. “I’m not happy about scoring in only three innings. But I’ll take a win in the state championship, because they’ve been hard to come by for us.”
The HiToms led 4-1 through five innings, after scoring three runs in the second inning. But in the sixth, Wayne County scored once and then loaded the bases with one out and scored four more runs on a single, a fielder’s choice, a single and a sacrifice fly to lead 6-4.
But, right away, Post 87 came back. It led off with back-to-back walks, and then Evan Edwards doubled in one run. Ryan Caveness then ripped a two-run single down the left-field line for a 7-6 lead.
Ryan Hedrick later, with the bases loaded, had a two-run double to left-center, and Zach McLean and Cesar Trejo followed with RBI singles to give the HiToms an 11-6 lead. Wayne County scored single runs in the seventh and ninth before Post 87 closed it out.
“We came back in, and our coach was like, ‘We’ve got to keep battling,’” Hedrick said of the sixth. “‘Enough is not enough.’ And we just kept pounding the ball, and it all just worked out in the end for us.”
Ryan Kahny got the win in relief of starter Bryce Lance, while Hedrick pitched the ninth. Hedrick also had two doubles and three RBIs at the plate, while Caveness had two hits and two RBIs and Edwards had two hits, including a double, and one RBI.