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Seminary slips past Loyd Star in 8th frame

SEMINARY – The Seminary Bulldogs rallied for three runs in thebottom of the eighth inning to beat the Loyd Star Hornets 9-8 inthe second game and sweep the best-of-three series in thesemifinals of the South State Class 2A baseball playoffs Saturdaynight.

Seminary improved to 29-4 with the win. Loyd Star finishes itsseason 22-9 under Coach Sidney Wheatley. The Bulldogs outhit theHornets 12-6.

“I told our kids I couldn’t have been more proud of them,” saidWheatley. “We had five ninth and 10th graders on the field. We hada chance to win the game. Our team rallied together.”

At the end of seven innings, the teams were tied 6-all as theHornets rallied for 4 runs in the top of the seventh.

Loyd Star’s Justin Whatley belted a two-run home run to put theHornets up 8-6 in the top of the eighth inning.

In the bottom the eighth, Seminary’s Andrew McKenzie drilled asolo home run over the center field fence and cut deficit to 8-7.Hornet starter Jody Britt returned to the mound to relieve freshmanreliever Patrick Holcomb.

Bulldog Timothy Lott was hit by a pitch and took first base.Joey Mooney singled and Lott went to second base. Norris doubled tothe fence to score Lott and tie the game at 8-all. Loyd Starintentionally walked Scott Broome. With the bases loaded, Mooneyscored the game-winning run on a wild pitch.

Loyd Star had rallied for four runs in the top of the seventh totie the game at 6-all. Jody Britt stole home plate on a passed ballto tie the game before the final out was made.

Jared Britt homered for the Hornets.

In the fifth inning, Loyd Star catcher Matthew Delaughter wasejected from the game by the home plate umpire after a play at theplate. A Seminary runner knocked Delaughter’s feet out andDelaughter fell on the runner.

“The player was on top of Matthew and both were trying to getup,” Wheatley explained.

Coach Wheatley protested the call and also was ejected from thegame. Earlier in the game, Loyd Star’s David Cuevas had suffered ashoulder injury sliding into second base.

Freshman Patrick Holcomb replaced Jody Britt on the mound andwas followed by Blake Wall in the sixth.

Seminary plays Sumrall next Saturday.