Left-handed pitchers Julian Blackburn (Hoggard) and Caleb Bishop (New Hanover) combined to allow just one earned run over 14 innings on Monday as Wilmington Post 10 swept Hampstead Post 167 in a doubleheader at Buck Hardee Field.
After leaving two runners stranded in the bottom of the first in game one, Post 10 scored three runs on four hits in the second to take a 3-0 lead thanks to a two-RBI single by Brandon Boone and sacrifice fly by Corey Everett.
Wilmington added an insurance run in the fourth on a base hit to left by Kennedy Hardy to drive in Boone, who singled up the middle with one out in the frame. Boone finished 2-for-3 with two runs batted in and one run scored, while Hardy and Brad Pennington combined to go 4-for-7 at the plate.
Hampstead Post 167 cut the deficit to 4-3 thanks to an RBI single by Jake Madole and three base throwing error, which scored two more runs on the play.
Blackburn tossed a complete game, surrendering three runs–one earned–on five hits in a complete game effort, with five strikeouts to secure the one run win. Cameron Guertin was saddled with the loss, allowing four runs over 5.1 innings pitched. The righty from Pender High School struck out four and walked one.
In the nightcap, Bishop matched his teammate, tossing six-plus innings as the southpaw scattered five hits in a 5-0 shutout. The New Hanover standout struck out five, walked one and gave way to Boone, who recorded the final three outs of the ballgame.
Ward Coleman doubled home a run in the bottom of the first and Donovan Francis ripped a two-RBI double as part of a four-run sixth to put the game in check. Coleman had two hits in game two, while Everett, Pennington, and Francis each scored once.
With Post 10 in front 1-0 in the top of the sixth, Chase Thompson led off with a single for Hampstead and Mason Berne nearly gave Post 167 the advantage, but a 1-1 pitch was drilled just foul over the field wall. Bishop eventually got Berne swinging to wiggle out of trouble and recorded the victory.
Trader Flora doubled in the setback for Hampstead, and Aaron Beach finished with a pair of bunt base hits. Sam Luchansky kept Post 167 in both games thanks to a strong effort in the mound. The right-handed side winder tossed 6.2 innings between the two games, allowing just one run on three hits.
The top three hitters in the Hampstead lineup were held at bay over the course of Monday night, going a combined 1-for-17 at the plate.
The two ballclubs square off again in a best-of-five opening round series in the Area II playoffs. Game one is scheduled for Thursday, July 2, at Topsail High School.
Box score R H E
Hampstead 000 030 0 3 5 0
Wilmington 030 100 X 4 11 1
Box score R H E
Hampstead 000 000 0 0 5 0
Wilmington 100 004 X 5 6 0