ROCKINGHAM — Evan Hodges put an exclamation point on what turned out to be a successful summer campaign for the junior varsity Renegade baseball team on Thursday.
Wrapping up its three-game week, Richmond defeated Southern Lee 4-0 in the season finale. The game went to five innings and was called for the time limit.
Hodges proved pivotal on the mound and at the plate for the JV Renegades, throwing a complete-game shutout and allowing just one hit.
In what was the JV team’s fifth shutout this summer, Hodges added six strikeouts. He allowed his lone hit, a single, in the top of the fourth.
His near-perfect bid saw Hodges retire the first 10 batters in order, the single, and he sat down the final five batters down in a row.
“This was a great way to end the summer,” head coach Ryan Mercer said. “Evan threw a great game and gave us a chance to win.
“I’m proud of the growth the guys showed throughout the summer,” he added, “and I’m looking forward to seeing these guys again in the spring to continue to build on what we’ve started.”
The JV Renegades bookended the game with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first and added two more in the home half of the fifth.
Two strikeouts and a groundout from Hodges started the game, and two at-bats into Richmond’s half saw him plate the game’s first run.
Sam Thompson drew a leadoff walk and scored when Hodges roped an RBI single to left field.
Hodges was caught trying to extend the play to second base, but Brooks Calhoun (hit-by-pitch) and Caden Nolan (error) quickly got on base.
Richmond’s second run came via a double steal, as courtesy runner Michael Osentowski took off for second, giving Calhoun the chance to score and make it 2-0.
Both teams traded zeroes in the second, third and fourth innings. Nolan added a single in the fourth, Richmond’s only hit during that span, but didn’t score.
A pair of two-out singles to opposite corners of the outfield by Garret Mabe (left) and Tyler McKenzie (right) helped get two insurance runs in the fifth.
Hayden Wheeler dug in during the next at-bat and delivered a two-RBI double to left field for the game’s final runs.
The JV Renegades finished the 2022 Central Carolina Scholastic Summer League with a 9-3-1 overall record and featured a season-long four-game winning streak. The team won four of its final five games.