Fri Jul 1, 2022

Optimist use long ball to win twice in DY State play

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Whiteville Optimist flexed their muscles, smashing seven home runs in two wins in the NC Dixie Youth Majors State tournament in Kenansville. Four of the round-trippers came in a 9-7 opening-round win over Elizabethtown. Two more four-baggers were keys to an 11-6 win over Shallotte in round two.

Saturday, Elizabethtown’s Garrett Melvin opened the contest with a solo homer. After a 1-2-3 first, the Whiteville Optimist blasted their way to a 7-1 lead in the bottom of the second. Eric Carr opened the frame with a homer. Giuliano Maggioli singled. Tyler Hammond homered to make the score 3-1. john Carter Strickland was hit by a pitch, Jacob Jones singled and Ty Little hit a pitch out of the park to make it 6-1. E. J. McLeod then added a solo shot to increase the margin to 7-1.

Coleman Tatum homered to lead off the Etown third. John Lawson Cook singled for Whiteville Optimist and scored to make it 8-2 after three frames.

Elizabethtown bunched together five hits in the fourth. Garrison Tatum’s two-run homer was the big blow. The Whiteville Optimist lead was reduced to 8-7. Ty Lawson drove in Cook in the fifth to increase the lead to 9-7.

Lawson came on to pitch for Whiteville Optimist in the fifth and retired six of the final seven Elizabethtown batters to nail down the 9-7 win.

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Giuliano Maggioli was the winning pitcher with Lawson picking up the save. Eight Whiteville Optimist hitters had one hit each.

P1230626Sunday, it appeared Whiteville Optimist would have no problem in their second round game with Shallotte. Bud Baldwin walked to lead off the game. John Lawson Cook singled. Baldwin and Cook scored on Ty Lawson’s double. John Carter Strickland’s two-out single scored Lawson giving Whiteville Optimist a 3-0 lead. Bud Baldwin held Shallotte in check until the third. Marcus Richmond’s home run after a single made the score 3-2. After two outs, Shallotte added a double, RBI single and a double before Baldwin retired the side with the score tied at three each.

Tyler Hammond singled to open the Optimist fourth. Hammond was retired on Strickland’s grounder. Jacob Jones singled. Baldwin’s single scored Strickland. Eric Carr came on in relief of Baldwin in the fourth. He gave up a run without giving up a hit or walk, tying the score at four.

Tyler Hammond gave Whiteville a 5-4 lead with a solo home run to left field in the fifth. A Shallotte two-run homer in the bottom of the fifth returned the lead to the Brunswick County team 6-5.

Whiteville Optimist was down to their final out when Baldwin and Cook were safe on infield hits. Ty Lawson uncorked a three-run blast over the wall in left-center giving Whiteville Optimist an 8-6 advantage. Eric Carr’s double and Giuliano Maggioli’s walk preceded Tyler Hammond’s second homer of the game a third of the the tournament. Whiteville Optimist led 11-6 entering the bottom of the sixth. Ty Lawson retired the side on three strikeouts to end the contest.

Eric Carr was the winning pitcher for Whiteville Optimist. Ty Lawson picked up his second save of the tournament. Tyler Hammond led Whiteville Optimist hitters with three hits, including his two homers, and four runs driven in. Lawson contributed two hits, driving in four runs. Bud Baldwin, John Lawson Cook, Eric Carr and John Carter Strickland all had two hits.

Whiteville Optimist will face Dunn in a battle of unbeatens, Monday at 8 p.m. Dunn defeated South Park 10-0 in round two.

P1230301District 2 runners-up, Columbus County and Riegelwood both were eliminated in play over the weekend. Saturday, Columbus County fell 14-1 to West Robeson American. Aaron Mitchell and Nate Hunt had hits for Columbus County. Riegelwood’s Coltin Simmons hit a first-inning home run, but Southport-Oak Island prevailed 9-3. Sunday, Leland shut out Columbus County 6-0. Stanley defeated Riegelwood 15-4.



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