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Bulldogs lose lead, game to Hartsville

Posted: March 11, 2012 11:04 a.m.
Updated: March 12, 2012 5:00 a.m.

Call this the one that got away.
Carrying a 3-0 led into the bottom of the seventh inning, Camden saw host Hartsville tie the game in its half of the frame before the Red Foxes sent the Bulldogs home after scoring a run in the bottom of the ninth for a 4-3 victory.
The loss gave Denny Beckley’s squad a 1-1 record in Region 6-AAA. Hartsville improved to 2-0 in league play.
Beckley said he felt this was one game which his team let slip through their hands.
“Definitely,” he said. “We had them on the ropes and played real well defensively until the seventh inning. We had some strange plays in that inning and (HHS) was able to get the breaks and we didn’t.”
After having gone down in order the first three frames, CHS got its first base runner on the night when freshman Darius Smith opened the fourth with a line drive single. After being bunted over to second by Ross Hough, Smith scored the game’s first run on Will Hough’s double to left field.
Two innings later, the Dogs gave starting pitcher Jake Ansley a 3-0 led as Smith again led off with a single. He would move up a based to third when Ansley legged out an infield single. Smith scored on a wild pitch. Ansley later made it 3-0 when he came in when Zack Caulder’s grounder to shortstop was thrown away.
Ansley, who battled early control problems including working out of a jam in the first as he walked three batters, took the mound to start the seventh after having been told if the Red Foxes got a runner on base, he would be lifted due to a high pitch count.
After the leadoff man singled and went to third on throwing error, Jalen Rice came on in relief of Ansley. An error let the hosts to score their first run. A hit batter put runners on first and second with no outs. With one out, CHS could not turn the double play on a ground ball as Red Fox runners were on the corners. A pair of wild pitches allowed the second run to come across with the other runner moving to third. He scored on a single to left.
Camden threatened in the eighth, putting runners on second and third with two outs but was unable to get a run.
HHS scored in the ninth on a leadoff walk, a sacrifice bunt and a one-out single.
Camden collected five hits in the game with Smith and Ansley getting a pair each.
Beckley, whose team defeated Hartsville in a pre-season tourney game two weeks earlier, was impressed with Ansley’s pitching, especially after his bumpy start.
“Jake really threw the ball well from the third through the sixth innings,” he said. “In the first two innings, he had a rough time of things; he had a hard time calming down and getting comfortable out there.
“Jake showed he can be a dominating pitcher for us when he’s throwing well, like he did in the middle innings of the game.”

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