Bulldogs take a bite out of error prone Rangers

Published 10:32 pm Tuesday, April 12, 2022

BY ALLEN LAMOUNTAIN
STAR CORRESPONDENT
An 11 run first inning – powered by a pair of home runs from senior catcher Morgan Lyons – helped propel the Hampton Bulldogs to a 20-1 Watauga Valley Conference win over Unaka at Claude Holsclaw Field on Tuesday.
“The first one I didn’t know went out,” Lyons said. “Then I saw my third base coach making the home run signal. These are my first two actual over the fence home runs. The pitches looked good to me and I just turned on them.”
Lyons finished with three hits and seven runs batted in for the game, with his second homer of the first frame being a grand slam. The ‘Dogs slammed Ranger starter Logan Lewis for six hits in the opening frame and capitalized on two big Unaka errors.
For the game Unaka was charged with 10 errors and had just one hit in the contest, that being a second inning single from Lewis. The Rangers scored their lone run in the last of the first on a walk to freshman Brynin Repass, an infield error that put Unaka runners on the corners and a sacrifice fly off the bat of Jaycob Nidiffer.
In the top of the third, the Rangers committed two more errors and the ‘Dogs (11-4 overall, 3-1 WVC) collected three hits with Jonathan Greenwell’s double plating two runs and Brody Hicks double bringing home another run.
Lyons’s base knock with the bases juiced brought home two more runs as Hampton took a 17-1 advantage. Hicks started for Hampton on the bump and he pitched well over his four innings of work, striking out six and walking three.
“I felt confident in anything I called for him,” Lyons said. “We wanted to come in here and get ready for the playoffs and we just wanted to come prepared and work on my swing and mechanics.”
Senior third baseman Caleb Royston finished with three hits and scored three runs and Conor Jones also collected three hits.
“Conference wins are very important and there is a certain pride in winning against teams in our county,” Bulldogs head coach Nicholas Perkins said. “We have been working on some things with Brody concerning his pitching and getting his body being in rhythm as a pitcher. His last two outings have been very solid. It was good to get everyone in the game and contributing to a conference win.”

Hampton 20-1
Hampton 11 06 03 – 20 13 1
Unaka 1 00 00 – 1 110
W – Hicks L – Lewis
HR – Lyons 2. 2B – Royster, Greenwell, Hicks

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