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Panthers splash past Lawrence County

Mother Nature made her presence known Friday night at MoyerField. She presented a misty rain, gusting winds and enoughmoisture to soak an entire baseball field. Brookhaven and LawrenceCounty braved the elements to play their Division 6-4A contest,despite the conditions.

The Panthers scored 3 runs in the top of the sixth and held onfor a 10-9 win over the Cougars in a 3-hour marathon contestbetween the two rivals. Senior pitcher Scotty Smith picked up hissecond win of the week, this time in relief of starter Brooks Hall.Smith allowed no runs and one hit, with 1 walk and 2 strikeouts inthe final 1.2 innings.

Smith authored a no-hitter in Ole Brook’s 6-0 shutout of TerryTuesday.

Brookhaven plays at South Pike Tuesday in a Division 6-4A test.Lawrence County continues in Division 6-4A action Tuesday atMcComb.

The Cougars (2-4, 1-1) opened the scoring in the top of thesecond, taking a 3-0 lead. Michael Thompson singled. Designatedhitter Nick Jackson walked. Leftfielder Jonathan Stephens doubledto left field and scored Thompson. Two batters later, secondbasemen Joseph Williams doubled to left center field to scoreStephens and Williams.

Brookhaven (4-1, 2-0) responded with 7 runs over the next 2innings to claim the lead at 7-4. Josh Patrick and Cody Dunawayscored a pair of runs in the third and fourth innings respectively.Darius Perkins, Xavier Qualls and Adam Ogden also scored for headcoach Randy Spring.

Ogden’s 2-run homer (scoring Qualls) over the left field fencein the fourth, supplied the firepower for Ole Brook.

In the fifth and sixth innings, Lawrence County reclaimed thelead at 9-7. A 4-run sixth by the Cougars plated Stephens, JeremyWilliams, Joseph Williams and Trent Hartzog. LCHS head coach ChrisClark saw his ballclub on the receiving end of six bases on ballsby the Panthers.

Spring’s squad, despite a 10-minute rain delay and heavy mistthroughout the evening, rallied for 3 runs in their half of thesixth.

W.T. King reached first as he was hit by a Cougar pitch andmoved to second on a wild pitch. Two batters later, Qualls walked.Ogden reached first on an error that eventually would allow Kingand Qualls to score, and advanced to third on back-to-back wildpitches. Two batters later, Brooks Hall singled to score the gamewinner.

In the top of the seventh, LCHS got the leadoff hitter (JakeRussell) on by a Panther error. He would make it to third onconsecutive fielder’s choices. With 2 outs, Joseph Williams struckout to end the game.

“The weather did not give an advantage to either team,” saidClark. “We had opportunities to take control of the gameearly.”

“Congratulations to Brookhaven, they did what they needed to doto win the game,” added Clark.

All 9 Brookhaven batters reached base at least once. Ogden ledthe way with a homer, a single, 2 runs scored and 2 RBIs. Dunawaysingled twice and score twice. Hall delivered a game-winning RBIdouble that scored Ogden.

Spring echoed Clark’s opinion concerning the weather.

“Neither team had an advantage as far as the weather wasconcerned,” said Spring. “Both teams made mistakes.

“We did a good job of getting people on base,” added Spring.”The entire team did a good job tonight. I am proud of the guys fornot giving up.”

Luke Watts suffered the loss for the Cougars in relief ofstarter Casey Williams. Watts allowed 3 earned runs on 1 hit. Hewalked one and struck 1 Panther hitter.

Stanfield led the LCHS offensive with a double and a single.Thompson had 2 singles and scored twice. Joseph Williams doubledand scored twice.