MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. — Beekmantown baseball coach Eric Bell wanted to see his team get tested in a close game before returning home.
He got what he wanted on Saturday.
The Eagles pulled out a 5-4 victory in nine innings over Liberty, West Virginia to close out their trip to the Mingo Bay Classic with a 3-1 record. Greg Manney singled in the game-winning run.
High School Sports Magazine
“I was saying before the game that we hadn’t had a close game down here and it would be great to have one to see how we would respond,” Bell said. “I got what I wished for, even though I wasn’t expecting extra innings.
“Our players showed a lot of heart.”
Liberty erased a 2-1 deficit with three runs in the top of the fifth inning before Beekmantown rallied for two in the home in tie it. Austin Bradish tripled in one run and Brandon Rabideau singled him in on the next pitch.
The Eagles had a golden opportunity to win the game in the bottom of the seventh when they loaded the bases, with nobody out. Liberty, however, was able to escape the trouble and force extra innings.
“Manney picked us up in relief after that,” Bell said. “It was deflating not to score in the seventh.”
Then, in the ninth, Bradish reached on an error and stole both second and third. The next two batters were walked intentionally, setting up Manney’s infield hit that drove in the game-winning run.
Bradish and Rabideau finished with three hits each for the Eagles, while Justin Stevens added two in an 11-hit attack.
“We faced adversity today,” Bradish said. “We did a great job fighting through it to get the win.”
Manney, the third of three Beekmantown pitchers, blanked Liberty from the sixth inning on to get the win.
“Brandon Buksa started for us and had a no-hitter going into the fourth when he was hit by a ball and had to leave the game,” Bell said.
Beekmantown pitchers allowed just two hits in nine innings, but walked 10.
Beekmantown 5, Liberty 4 (9)
Liberty 100 030 000 — 4 2 4
B’town 101 020 001 — 5 11 3
Kieyenbihl, Gillespie (4), Widire (7) and VanNorman. Buksa, Barber (4), Manney (6) and Rabideau. WP- Manney. LP- Widire. 2B- Rabideau (Beek). 3B- Bradish (Beek).