It’s time again for another SSR(Spring sports report) and yesterday we headed over to Page HS where the Pirates were taking on the Dudley Panthers. Page jumped out in front in the first inning going up 5-0 as the Panthers’ starting pitcher, Frankie Johnson was struggling on the mound. Johnson’s grandmother had died this week and he was called for four balks that led to two Page runs and Johnson was in a deep hole. The base umpire ended up calling five balks on Johnson and Coach Larry Farrar had no choice but to take Johnson out of the game.
Page went ahead 6-1 and it looked like that 10 run rule after five might be in order on this Wednesday afternoon. Then all of the sudden the Dudley pitching settled down and the Page pitching went to pot. Page had used their top pitcher Kornblun in the game the day before, a 13-1 win over High Point Central. You would think that Page would save their #1 man for Dudley a much tougher team than HPC, but the bottom line is, HPC was a Metro 4-A conference game and I believe the theory is, put the conference games first, no matter what.
Down 6-1, the Dudley fans were a little down but that all begin to change when Dudley started drawing walks and then coaches Farrar and Baynes started bunting the ball almost every time another Panther came to the plate. Page fell apart and the Pirates couldn’t handle the bunts. Not the regular bunts, the squeeze bunts, the drag bunts, any of the bunts. Dudley was bunting them blind and then Ray Crawford connected for a bases-loaded triple and the route was on.
What had been a 6-1 Pirate lead became 6-3 Page, then 6-6, then Dudley went up 7-6, then 8-6, then 9-6, then the next thing you know, Dudley ends up winning this game 19-7. The Panther fans were going hysterical and the kids were pretty happy too. Ray Crawford, Doug Sigmon, Ronnie Burks, Frankie Johnson, all of the Panthers were on their game by the time they got on that bus and headed back to Lincoln Street. Dudley(2-2) out-scored Page(2-3) 18-1, after trailing 6-1 to win the ball game 19-7.
I also made the trek over to Memorial Stadium to see the N.C. A&T Aggies hang on to defeat the High Point University Purple Panthers 9-7. Nick Rogers, out of Northwest Guilford and the Guilford Patriots Palomino summer team, finished up the game in relief for the Aggies. Rogers came into the game with the Aggies sporting a 9-4 lead and he was able to hold the lead and help A&T get the win. I saw Lester Rivernbark Sr. at the ball park and the Aggies do have a ton of local players on their roster. Lester Rivenbark Jr., Dusty Shutt, Nick Rogers, Jody Calloway, just to name a few.
In other area high school action, Western Guilford improved to (4-0) as the Hornets topped Southern Guiflord 10-4. Corey McKenna got the save for WG and didn’t his dad Joel McKenna used to be an assistant football coach at WG? Macon Smith and Caleb Shelton were the top Hornet hitters going a combned 4-8 with 6 RBI’s between them and Smith had a home run. Jordan Townsend got the win for WG. SG falls to (2-5) with the loss. The Eastern Guilford Wildcats ran their 2008 season mark to (4-1) after their 5-1 win over the Greensboro Day School. Jarreth Thomas, Trip Gardner, and Derek Holborook had a hit a-piece for the ‘Cats and Holbrook hit a triple and Gardner had had big RBI, while Travis Nance grabbed the win for EG.
Southwest Guilford(2-2) shut out Caldwell Academy and I haven’t heard the first thing ever about Caldwell Academy but for Reid Holmes’ SWG Cowboys, Brett Underwood had two hits and he scored three runs and Jeremy Hall had a couple of hits and Payne Craven picked up the win.
The matchup of the day may have been the Grimsley Whirlies at the Ledford Panthers. Ledford prevailed 8-7 to move to go (6-0) on the year. The game was not decided until the bottom of the 7th when Kevin Connolly’s(FOX8 Sports) son Brian drove in the go-ahead and game-winning runs with a single for the Panthers. The Whirlies(3-2) were paced by home runs from George Carter and Gabe Dimock along with Matt Nettesheim’s 3-4 day highligted by a single, double, triple, a run scored, and an RBI. Carter ends up going 2-4 with 3RBI’s and Dimock went 1-3 with that solo home run. Tough loss by the Whirlies, but excellent competition from the Ledford Panthers.
In the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools tournament, West Forsyth had no problem with Mount Tabor with the Titans taking the Spartans 12-6. West Forsyth had a 12-2 lead going into the fifth and Tabor made a slight rally but West wins the title. Garrison Lassiter had a Grand Slam home run and was named the tournament MVP. In the third place game, it was Glenn over East Forsyth 7-2.
On tap today:
Southern Alamance at Ragsdale(5-1)5pm
High Point Andrews at High Point Central5:30pm
Northwest Guilford(1-2) at Southwest Guilford(2-2)6pm