Home Local Sports Post 49 suffers loss to Beulaville despite early lead

Post 49 suffers loss to Beulaville despite early lead

Tristan Hunt races to first base on one of his team-high three hits on Wednesday. (Kyle Pillar, sports editor)

HAMLET — An early lead for the Hamlet American Legion baseball team led to a tug-of-war with Beulaville Post 511 on Wednesday.

A night after collecting a nine-run win, Post 49 couldn’t hold on to a second-inning lead and lost 12-9.

Hamlet jumped out to a 5-3 lead after the first two frames, but Beulaville outscored Post 49 9-4 over the final five innings.

Head coach Chip Gordon said the lack of situational hitting and too many walks led to his team’s defeat.

“It was a back-and-forth game, and we came out hot and swung the bats really good early on,” Gordon said. “But we had some key situations with runners on base where we didn’t get the situational hit when we needed it.

“We walked several batters and we have a bunch of tired arms right now,” he added of the pitching. “That was the story of the game. We didn’t get the breaks tonight. I thought we outplayed them in every facet of the game except situational hitting.”

Post 511 scored a run in the top of the first off starting pitcher Tanner Cheek (3.0 innings, four hits, five runs). Hamlet answered with four runs in the home half.

Finley Spicer recorded the first of his three RBIs with a sacrifice fly to left, scoring Nick DiCarlo (single). Tristan Hunt (single) scored on a passed ball and Ra’Nes Little collected an RBI single to left to plate Cameron Way (single).

Ryley Norton, who also had a single, crossed home plate to make it 4-1 following an error.

Finley Spicer had one hit and three RBIs in Wednesday’s game. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

Beulaville added two runs in the top of the second, but Spicer gave Hamlet another cushion with an RBI double to right field. That brought in Hunt (single) to make it a 5-3 advantage.

Post 511 tied the game with two runs in the third and added three runs in the fourth to take its first lead 8-5.

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Chipping away in the home half of the fourth, Spicer hit into a double play but gave DiCarlo (walk) time to score from third. Beulaville scored another run in the fifth to maintain a 9-6 lead.

Pinch hitter Ra’Nik Little closed the gap with a sac fly to right in the home half, plating Ra’Nes Little (double). The cat and mouse game continued in the sixth, seeing Post 511 add two more runs to gain a four-run lead.

Hamlet’s final two runs came in the sixth, courtesy of a Spicer fielder’s choice to short and an RBI single to right by Cheek.

One more run in the top of the seventh made it a 12-9 game in favor of Post 511. Hamlet managed to load the bases in the bottom half and have the winning run at the plate, but a pop out and strikeout ended the game.

Post 49 outhit Beulaville, collecting 15 hits to Post 511’s 11 hits. Nine batters had a hit for Hamlet, including a team-high three from Hunt. Adding two-hit performances were Cheek, Ra’Nes Little, Norton and Way.

DiCarlo, Spicer, Ayden Allen and Markey Purvis each connected for one hit. Cheek and both Littles registered one RBI.

Cameron Way (left) tags out a runner at third following a relay throw from Ra’Nes Little in right field. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

“I’m proud of the guys and they battled until the end,” Gordon said. “It’s been a grind this summer with a lot of games in a short amount of time. We had a chance to win with the bases loaded and our four and five guys up. You can’t ask for a better shot than that.

“This week off is going to be very good for us to reset and refocus,” Gordon closed. “All of the guys will get some rest and our pitchers will have time to rest their arms. We’re looking forward to the final push into the playoffs.”

Hamlet (10-7) will return to play after the Fourth of July holiday, and travel to Pleasure Island Post 129 on July 5. The two teams will face off at Ashley High School in Wilmington.

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Kyle Pillar is a nine-time North Carolina Press Association award-winning sports editor with The Richmond Observer. Follow the sports department on Twitter @ROSports_ for the best in-depth coverage of Richmond County sports.