BURLINGTON, N.C. – After taking a 9-3 loss in game two earlier that afternoon, East Rutherford jumped on South Granville early in game three, plating eight runs in the second inning to take an 8-0 lead and cruise to a 10-5 victory and 2A State Championship. The victory claimed the school’s sixth baseball State Championship for head coach Bobby Reynolds, who tied three other coaches for the most State Championships won by a head coach with six in his career.
Gehrig Christopher started off the rally with a one-out double and moved to third on a single by pitcher Kaleb Green. Then Adam Barnette tapped a ball to third base, and Vikings third baseman Justin Brown tried to cut Christopher down at the plate, but the ball squirted away from the catcher and the Cavaliers took a 1-0 lead. The Cavaliers plated seven more runs in the inning on three more doubles and a two-RBI triple by Nick Strickland extending the lead to 8-0.
The Cavaliers got three and one-third innings of solid pitching from Kaleb Green who gave up five hits and four runs on the afternoon before exiting and turning the game over to Ethan Stewart. Stewart pitched a complete game shutout in game one of the series, an 8-0 East Rutherford victory, and he was strong in three and two-thirds of game three. He allowed a single run on just two hits on his way to the save and M.V.P. honors in the series.
South Granville tried to battle back, adding a run in each of the second, fourth and fifth innings. The Vikings had perhaps their most dangerous threat in the third inning as Tucker Brown and Justin Bullock led off with back-to-back singles before coming around to score on a two-out two-run single by Clay Walters. Walters was three for four in the game with two runs scored and three knocked in.
East Rutherford right fielder Kendall McGowan was the top performer at the plate for the Cavaliers going three for four with a run scored and one batted in. He smacked two doubles in the outing. Christopher was also three for four with a run scored and an RBI.