Eagles rip Pender behind 17 hits, Wooten’s gem

BURGAW — East Bladen’s bats got explosive and Xavier Wooten hurled a one-hitter Friday as the Eagles whalloped Pender County for a 12-1 Four County Conference win.

East Bladen improved to 2-3 overall and 1-1 in the conference.

The Eagles got on the board first with a run in the top of the first inning when Sincere Smith laced a single, swiped second base, swiped third base and trotted home on Kyle Tatum’s RBI single.

But it was the third inning that turned things for East Bladen. The Eagles batted around and scored nine times — on 10 hits, including two triples and a double — to open a 10-0 advantage.

Nick Collins got the ball rolling with a single and, after Shy Pone walked, Smith cracked an RBI single. Tatum followed with a run-scoring single and Wooten helped his cause with an RBI single. Brooks McGill followed with an RBI double, Greyson Heustess crushed two-run triple and Deondre Newkirk belted an RBI single for a 7-0 lead.

Collins stroked his second single of the frame and Pone dropped in an RBI single ahead of a two-run triple by Smith.

In the fourth inning, McGill walked, Heustess lined a single and Newkirk drove in a run with a single ahead of an RBI single by Collins for a 12-0 Eagles lead.

The patriots nicked Wooten for a run in the home half of the fourth, but the game ended on the mercy rule. Wooten earned the win after going the distance and striking out six.

At the plate, Collins was 3-for-3 with an RBI to lead the Eagles’ 17-hit attack; Smith was 3-for-4 with the triple and three RBI; Pone was 2-for-3 with an RBI; Newkirk was 2-for-3 with two RBI; Tatum was 2-for-3 with an RBI; Heustesss was 2-for-4 with a triple and two RBI; Wooten was 2-for-4 with two RBI; and McGill had a double and RBI.

East Bladen will play host to Heidi Trask for a conference game on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

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