PROSPERITY — Mid-Carolina High School Rebels clinched a AA Region 2 Baseball Championship Wednesday night at Lindy Richardson Field, shutting out their in-county rivals, the Newberry Bulldogs 10-0.
Rebels lefty, Danton Hyman, overcame one walk and scattered four hits as he pitched a complete game, striking out eight.
NHS put pressure on MCHS early as leadoff batter and speedster, Ty Nance, singled. But Duncan Crotwell cut down Nance with an accurate, quick throw to Chase Shealy as Nance tried to steal second.
Hyman got a groundout to first to end the frame.
NHS Senior Jack Huggins found himself in an early bases-loaded jam in the first.
first pitch by Hyman smacked the first Huggins pitch of the night, up the middle for a single.
As Huggins pitched from the stretch, Cole Shealy singled and Justin Hawkins walked.
Huggins struck out the next batter, but with ducks still on the pond, Josh Haney walked to score Hyman.
Consecutive singles by Shawn Sexton, Crotwell and Chris Edwards drove in three more runs and led to a Bulldog pitching change as ten Rebel batters batted in the first inning.
The Bulldogs threatened in the top of the second as Kinard singled to deep left field. He advanced to second on a ground out and moved to third on a passed ball. But Hyman dug deep and struck on the next Bulldog he faced so Kinard was stranded at third.
Leading 5-0, the Rebels added one run in the second and in the third inning to take a 7-0 lead.
The Bulldogs had men on base in the third and fourth innings but Hyman kept the hitters off balance as he pitched from the stretch.
And the shutout continued.
The bottom of the fifth inning the Rebels focused on finishing the game.
Haney and Sexton reached on errors and Flemon walked to have the bases juiced for Bulldog reliever Jared Harmon. Crotwell and Edwards greeted Harmon with singles that drove in Haney and Sexton.
Then Hyman came up to bat and there was some suspense among the Rebel crowd because parents heard
Hyman say if he hit a walk off play that the team planned to do a dogpile in the infield.
As he did all night, Hyman delivered with a solid single to score Flemon, the winning run.
MCHS Coach Daniel Gregory didn’t mind the ice bath on a chilly April evening.
“I’m extremely proud of this group of guys for coming to the ballpark everyday ready to work to get better. Winning a region championship was one of our pre-season goals and it was fun to watch the celebration of hard work paying off. It’s been a fun ride but these guys certainly aren’t satisfied,” he said. “I’m excited to see how the rest of the way unfolds.”
Leading hitters for MCHS Hyman 2-3; Shealy 2-3; Crotwell 2-3; and Edwards 2-3). The Bulldogs leading hitters were Nance (1-2); Harmon (1-2); Kinard 1-2 ).
With the win, MCHS (8-1) clinched first place in Region 2.
Mid-Carolina wraps up region play tonight as the Rebels host the Abbeville Panthers.