COAL CITY, WV- The Greenbrier East Spartans traveled to Independence on Tuesday, March 28 in what at times felt like the dead of winter as cool temperatures and scattered showers filled the air.
The Spartans (4-3) held a 1-run lead in the top of the eighth inning but gave up two runs in the bottom half as the Patriots walked off with a 10-9 victory.
Down 1-0 in the top of the third inning, the Spartans loaded the bases after singles by Gavin Bennett and Peyton DeHaven, and a walk to Ian Cline. Ashton Cochran and Darris Boswell were then hit by pitches and both plays resulted in two runs for the Spartans. East would get two more runs later in the frame on an error, but the Patriots scored three in the bottom half and knotted the score at 4-all after four.
Clayton Morgan and Zion Detko each doubled in runs the sixth inning that put East up 6-4 at that point.
Fast forward to the top of the eighth when Henry Goodwin hit a sac fly that scored Gabe Patton and the Spartans took a 9-8 lead.
However, in the bottom of the frame, Independence (2-1) loaded the bases with nobody out. Zach Snith was hit by a pitch, Hunter Moore walked and Caelyb Nichols also got plunked by a pitch. Clay Basham then hit a 3-2 pitch for a base hit that tied the game at 9–all. After another walk, that brought the Pats’ Cole Cunningham to the plate, and he ripped a game-winning single to center that scored the final run of the night.
Despite the loss, the Spartan offense hit really well. Bennett went 4-5 with three runs scored. DeHaven, Boswell, Patton and Detko all had two hits apiece. Boswell, Morgan and Patton each had two RBI’s on the night.
Layne Lambert started on the mound for East. After he exited, Rylee Wilson and Eli Green also saw time on the hill.
Cunningham was 4-6 for Independence. He had a home run and drove in three runs.
East plays at Shady Spring Wednesday, March 29.