Gilbert and Brookland-Cayce staged seventh-inning rallies to come away with first round wins at the South Carolina Diamond Invitational baseball tournament on Thursday at Blythewood.
In other first-round games, host Blythewood thumped Hinton (NY) 11-1 and South Aiken breezed by Ridge View, 12-2, in the tournament opener.
Gilbert (16-1) plated two runs in the top of the seventh inning and kept Lexington at bay in the bottom half to pull out an 8-7 win. It was the 15th straight triumph for the red-hot Class 2A Indians.
Mike Morrison had three hits for the Tribe, but none was bigger than the two-run single he stroked in the seventh inning to put Gilbert ahead. Austin LaBounty and Taylor Burriss also had productive games at the plate. LaBounty had two hits, including a two-run homer to right center field in the third. Burriss had two hits, two runs scored and one RBI.
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Drew Moyer, the third Gilbert pitcher, pitched two scoreless innings in relief to earn the mound decision.
Richie McCullough had three RBIs and Cody Smith drove in two runs for Lexington.
Brookand-Cayce (8-6) required a four-run rally in the bottom of the seventh to emerge with an 8-7 win over Dutch Fork.
The Bearcats tallied the critical runs on a fielder’s choice, a RBI double by pinch hitter Zach Sightler, a bases loaded walk drawn by John Long and a passed ball that allowed T.J. Hoard to race home with the winning run. Long was the winning pitcher in relief of Michael Gilroy.
Ryan McPhail, Nicholas Papas and Stuart Vincent all had two hits for the Silver Foxes. McPhail scored three runs, and Vincent drove in two.
Taylor Eubanks was the headliner for Blythewood (11-3) – going the distance to get the win on the hill and going 3-for-4 with two runs scored and two RBIs. Otherwise, Taylor Purvis drove in three runs and Zach Callahan went 3-for-3.
Jermarcus Sharpe’s solo home run in the last inning (the fifth) was the only highlight for Ridge View against South Aiken.