Lexington came all the way back from a first-round loss in the Class 4A state baseball playoffs, sweeping a doubleheader at Goose Creek on Wednesday to claim the District 5 title and qualify for the Lower State championship tournament for the third straight season under coach Brian Hucks.
The Wildcats (20-8) open the Elite Eight phase of the postseason on Saturday at Sumter.
Lexington, which fell 4-2 to Ridge View in the district opener last Thursday, completed a 4-0 run through the loser’s bracket by defeating the host Gators 10-4 in the opener and 7-3 in the nightcap.
Ryan Brown, Brice Kirven and Jordan Buster all had two hits in the first game. Buster and Cameron Matthews drove in two runs apiece. Kirven, Marshal Pratte and Justin Bowers all scored two runs. The game-winning run was scored by Pratte when Will Lacount drew a bases-loaded walk.
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Cordes Baker (8-1) pitched innings of two-hit ball with eight strikeouts to pick up the win on the hill. Trey Baker left with an 8-1 lead. Watts and Brown closed it out.
In the do-or-die second game, Lexington broke open a 2-1 game with a three spot in the top of the fifth. The highlight was a two-run single by Brown. Bowers and Matthews had the final touches with RBI singles in the top of the seventh that expanded the Wildcat advantage to 7-2.
On the bump, Rhett Bane and Buster combined for a six-hitter. Bane allowed one run in 4.2 innings of work to get the win and up his record to 5-1. Buster did not allow an earned run in 2.2 innings out of the bullpen.