ROCKY POINT — West Bladen got a strong pitching performance on the hill by Travis Bowen and Trevor Lesane missed hitting for the cycle by the unlikeliest portion of all — a single — and the Knights crushed Heidi Trask in Four County Conference action on Tuesday, 14-2.
The win improves West Bladen to 6-5 in the conference and 9-9 overall.
Bowen hurled all six innings and allowed just two hits, two walks and hit a batter. He also struck out eight.
After the Titans scored a run in the bottom of the first inning, West Bladen knotted the game in the second on an RBI single by Liston Britt. The Knights then began pounding Trask pitching, scoring a run in the third on a John Waldrop RBI single and added adding five runs in the fourth that was highlighted by a two-run single from C.J. Singletary, a two-run triple by Lesane and an RBI single by Clay Allen for a 7-1 lead.
West Bladen put up seven insurance runs in the sixth inning, featuring a solo home run by Lesane, RBI single by Waldrop and two-run double by Lesane.
“Travis pitched a really good game,” West Bladen coach Kim Cain said. “And we banged out 11 hits, which was good to see.
“This was a good win for us, and we need to pretty much win out for a shot at the playoffs,” he added.
Lesane finished 3-for-5 with the double, triple and home run, and drove in five runs. Waldrop was also 3-for-5 with two RBI and Singletary drove in three runs. Britt was 2-for-3 with an RBI.
The Knights play at Pender County on Friday.
— In Burgaw on Tuesday, East Bladen rallied once for the lead but couldn’t do it again late, falling to Pender County in a Four County Conference game, 8-5.
The loss drops the Eagles to 4-6 in the conference and 5-12 overall.
After the Patriots had taken a 4-0 lead, East Bladen rallied for five runs and took the one-run lead. But Pender County scored four more runs late in the game, and the Eagles couldn’t match it — although they tried.
East Bladen jammed the bases in the top of the seventh with no outs, but couldn’t get the big hit.
“Pitching is our biggest problem … we just don’t have it,” East Bladen coach Russell Priest said. “I thought we’d be able to do more damage in the seventh, but just didn’t get the key hit with the bases loaded.”
Hastin McGill was 3-for-4 with a pair of doubles, while Colby Hester had a double for East Bladen.
— In Rocky Point on Tuesday, the Lady Knights missed out on a chance to move up in the Four County Conference standings after suffering a 4-3 loss to Heidi Trask.
West Bladen is now 8-3 in the conference and 17-3 overall.
The Lady Titans nicked West Bladen for a run in the bottom of the first, but the Lady Knights answered with three runs in the top of the third when they loaded the bases and Sophia Singletary scored on a wild pitch to tie the game; Taylor Stephens then stroked a two-run double for a 3-1 lead.
Trask cut the deficit in half with a run in the bottom of the third and, after a scoreless fourth and fifth frames, the Lady Titans knotted the game with a run in the sixth.
The Lady Titans mounted a threat in the seventh and eventually pushed across the winning run.
“We had the chances, but just couldn’t get the hits when we needed,” West Bladen coach Pam Stephens said. “And our No. 3 through No. 7 hitters went oh-fer. We can’t have that and win.”
Taylor Stephens was 2-for-2 with a double, triple and two RBI.
— In Burgaw on Tuesday, Four County Conference leader Pender County took advantage of several East Bladen errors to post an 8-3 win.
The loss drops the Lady Eagles to 6-5 in the conference and 8-5 overall.
The Lady Patriots scored four runs in the first inning, added single runs in the third and fourth, then tacked on two insurance runs in the fifth.
East Bladen scored twice in the fifth when Anna Brewer laced a two-run single, then added a run in the seventh on another Brewer RBI single.
“It was terrible,” said East Bladen coach Patty Evers. “We made three errors on one play.”
Brewer was 2-for-4 with three RBI for the Lady Eagles.