Dylan Thompson didn’t have his best game on the mound; he made up for it with his bat.
The Socastee sophomore drove in teammate Hunter Renfrow with a bloop single in the bottom of the eighth inning to push the Braves to a 7-6 victory over Myrtle Beach on Tuesday.
“Coach has been on us a lot of mindset – us toughening up a lot,” Thompson said. “At the end of the night, you just have to put the ball in play and make plays. It’s a win. It’s a good feeling, and we needed it.”
The Braves certainly did.
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The victory put Socastee into a tie for second place in Region VII-AAA with Myrtle Beach. St. James, courtesy of a 7-4 win Tuesday over Georgetown, sits atop the region, but only by one game.
Two of those three teams will earn home playoff contests – which two remains to be seen. Socastee made another case for itself against the Seahawks, despite Thompson’s unlikely off night from the rubber.
The 6-foot righty entered the game 4-0 on the season. Combined with his record from last year he stood at 10-1 with plenty of high school ball ahead of him. After holding Myrtle Beach scoreless for the first four innings, the Seahawks touched him up for four runs in the top of the fifth.
Eventually Myrtle Beach scored two more runs off three different relievers to send the game to extra innings. 1/3 innings – prevented a Myrtle Beach baseSocastee junior Kyle Smith pitched the final 2 1/3 innings. The eighth inning was the first frame all night in which Myrtle Beach did not advance a baserunner to at least second base
In Socastee’s half of the final inning, Renfrow reached on walk, advanced to second on a wild pitch and moved to third on a ground out. Thompson then brought him home with a two-out hit placed just out of the reach of a pair of Myrtle Beach players in left field.
“We’ll take it,” Socastee coach Curtis Hudson said. “You have to find a way to win. … I don’t think either team played their best. But we were able to score one more run in the end.
“I can’t say it was a good game or a well-played game; it was just a competitive game.”
The result sets up some interesting scenarios for the final three games of the region schedule.
St. James will head to Myrtle Beach this Friday. With a victory, the Sharks will have the head-to-head tie-breaker over the Seahawks with a regular-season finale against Socastee on tap one week later. However, a Myrtle Beach win – and a Socastee win against Wilson – would create a three-way tie for first heading into the final week of the regular season.
“We have some young kids in our lineup,” Myrtle Beach coach Tim Christy said. “And the closer they get to the fire, the better they’re going to be. If we come out to Friday and play the way we’re supposed to, we’ll be in the game.”