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Enterprise, West Lincoln split doubleheader

Lincoln County baseball rivals Enterprise and West Lincoln met up Friday evening in a critical district doubleheader with major implications in the standings on the line.

The first game was exciting from start to finish with both teams tied at nine heading into the seventh inning. West Lincoln scored five runs in the top of the seventh to take game one 14-10. Enterprise bounced back in game two, with a great pitching performance by sophomore Landon Gartman and the offense backed him up with 10 runs to take the second game 10-2.

Enterprise now stands at 13-8 overall and 8-4 in district play. West Lincoln now holds an 18-3 overall record and 10-2 in district play.

Game one: WL 14, Enterprise 10

In the first game of the evening, the Yellow Jackets jumped out to a 9-2 lead by the end of the third inning to take control of the game.

The West Lincoln Bears didn’t quit and found a way to shake off the rust and battle back. The Bears scored nine runs in the final two innings of the game to complete the comeback and defeated Enterprise 14-10.

The two teams combined for 11 errors on the field.

“I thought we started well and hit cruise control after that,” Enterprise head coach Cass Brister said. “Austin (Fugler) threw great for us and we didn’t make the plays to back him up. West Lincoln kept grinding and found a way to win.”

Freshman Austin Fugler got the start for the Yellow Jackets and pitched five innings and gave up three earned runs (five runs) on seven hits, two walks and struck out eight. Gartman, senior Cade Cangemi and eighth grader Dylan Carter pitched the final two innings of relief for Enterprise and gave up nine runs, none of which were earned runs.

Senior Daniel Spears took the mound for West Lincoln in game one and pitched three innings and gave up nine runs (three earned) on four hits, three walks and struck out four batters. Sophomore Gavin Burris came on in relief for the last four innings and gave up one run (none earned), giving up no hits, three walks and struck out six.

Burris sealed the door for West Lincoln as the offense exploded late to earn the come from behind victory.

Burris also had a big day at the plate for West Lincoln with one hit and three RBIs for the Bears. Spears had a big day as well, going 2-for-5 at the plate with three RBIs and three runs scored. Junior Landon Lynch had two RBIs and senior Austin Burris had one RBI.

Sophomore Hunter Richardson led Enterprise at the plate going 2-for-5 with three RBIs. Fugler, Gartman and senior Marvin Butler all had one RBI each.

Game two: Enterprise 10, West Lincoln 2

Enterprise bounced back in a big way in the second game with a 10-2 victory, led by stellar pitching from Gartman.

The sophomore pitched the complete seven innings and gave up two earned runs on two hits, four walks and struck out 12 batters.

“I was proud of the way my kids responded in the last game,” Brister said. “We hit the ball very well and Landon (Gartman) did a great on on the mound. This is a big win for us in district.”

Taking a 2-0 lead heading into the bottom of the fourth, Enterprise exploded in the inning and put up six runs on the board to put the game out of reach at 8-0.

The Yellow Jackets added two more runs in the bottom of the sixth after West Lincoln got on the board in the top of the sixth to take a 10-1 lead.

The Bears got another run across in the top of the seventh, but Enterprise held on for the crucial win.

Fugler had a big day at the plate in game two for Enterprise, going 3-for-4 with a team-high five RBIs. Carter, Gartman and junior Tanner Waldrop each had one RBI on the night.

Junior Kylar Fielder and Nathanael Addison each pitched three innings for West Lincoln. Fielder gave up seven earned runs on five hits, seven walks and struck out two. Addison gave up three runs (two earned) on three hits, two walks and struck out three.

Fielder and Burris each had one RBI to lead the West Lincoln offense in game two.