In its regular-season finale on Thursday, Wayne County Post 11 took a big lead and held off Wilson Post 13 for a 7-4 victory.
With the win, Post 11 heads into the postseason on an eight-game win streak and went undefeated in Area I East Division play.
Wayne County ends the regular season with a 19-4 overall record.
“This season has been really special, and I’m really proud of all these kids,” Wayne County Post 11 head coach Adam Pate said. “It was fun getting to enjoy a Legion regular season once again after last summer.”
After a scoreless three innings, Post 11 scored the game’s first after a Wilson error enabled Sam Rice to cross home plate. Logan Merritt then stole home to give Post 11 a 2-0 lead.
Post 11 extended its lead to 3-0 on Austin Booth’s RBI double.
“Early, we didn’t have any big hits,” Pate said. “But we did some good things with the slash, we tried to suicide one time, and it didn’t work, but we ran the bases well, and we had a few big hits that I was definitely proud of.”
Later in the bottom of the sixth, had Braeden Collins scored off another Wilson error, while Will Harris scored off a wild pitch that put Wayne County up 5-0.
Will Albert’s RBI double enabled Wayne County to increase its lead up 7-0.
Utilizing five pitchers – Will Pennington, Tyler Thompson, Hunter Theriac, Campbell Cunningham and Carson Gipson – Wayne County kept Wilson off the board for most of the evening.
However, in the top of the seventh, Wilson managed to score four runs to cut Wayne County’s lead down to 7-4, but the hole was too deep for Wilson to dig out of, and Post 11 held off Wilson to secure the win.
“I was really proud of our pitchers,” Pate said. “After we clinched first place, we wanted to get a bunch of guys some work, and all the pitchers did a good job when they toed the rubber in different situations.”
Post 11 will face either Ahoskie Post 102 or Kinston Post 43 on Monday in the first round of the Area I East Tournament, and Pate said his squad is ready for the challenge that awaits them in the postseason.
“We’ve been in this spot before. Having a great regular season and not coming up like we want to in the playoffs, so we have a lot to do next week,” Pate said. “We’re looking forward to it.”