By David Wheeler/Special to the NEMS Daily Journal
BOONEVILLE – Booneville Blue Devils head baseball coached Bo Sandlin summed up his team’s day very simply.
“It was a good day.”
Recovering from a tough division loss on Friday, the Blue Devils rebounded with two wins Saturday, including a 2-1 nail-biter against the Baldwyn Bearcats.
“I’m proud of the team battling back after a tough loss to Belmont,” Sandlin said. “We struggled at the plate, but senior Dan Hill came in and got the big hit.
“The biggest thing for me is that we continued to compete.”
This low-scoring matchup saw Baldwyn (11-3) grab a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning on a sacrifice fly by Keyton Stone. That appeared to be enough for Baldwyn starter Dustin Kirk, who was effective, only allowing six hits over his six innings of work.
Booneville (11-6) finally broke through against Kirk in the bottom of the sixth. The Devils notched three hits in the frame, but more importantly, the Bearcats defense gave up three errors.
That set up Hill’s crucial at-bat, delivering a single to right field that scored the two winning runs.
“The errors late kinda killed us,” Baldwyn head coach Shannon Smith said. “Bottom line, this might have been the worst we’ve played all year.
“I think we almost equaled our season total for errors in one game. But give credit to Booneville, that’s what good teams do when they have an opportunity.”
Pitching equally as well was Booneville starter Daniel Calvery, who went six innings while only allowing three hits. Joseph Caver came on in the seventh frame, allowed a two-out hit, but eventually closed down the Bearcats.
second win of the day
Earlier Saturday, Booneville beat South Pontotoc 5-2 in a competitive pairing of area Class 3A teams. Booneville is in Division 1-3A, while the Cougars are in 2-3A.