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Bulldogs rally, then hold off stubborn Redhawks

Posted: April 11, 2014 2:01 p.m.
Updated: April 14, 2014 5:00 a.m.

So much for a “ho-hum” victory over Westwood.
Playing its third game baseball game in as many nights, Camden needed to close the contest on a 5-0 run to escape from Westwood with a 10-4 win on Thursday night.
The victory kept the Bulldogs tied for third in Region 4-AAA play with River Bluff. CHS improved to 9-7 overall and 6-3 in conference play.
“Westwood has not been very good and in the fifth inning, it was a 5-4 game,” said CHS head coach Denny Beckley. “But I like the mentality our team had. We never panicked and we picked up our intensity after that.”
Nursing a one-run lead, Carson Morgan opened the sixth with a double followed by an RBI triple by Tyler Jordan to right field. Jordan came home on a Darius Smith sacrifice fly. Cole Irick kept the inning alive with a single, went to second on a passed ball and took both third and home on wild pitches to give the Dogs an 8-4 lead.
Camden tacked on two more runs in the seventh as Nick Tucker led the inning off with a single. Ross Hough then had an RBI triple before scoring on Will Abbott’s single.
Hough, who was 3-for-4 with a pair of RBI, went the first five innings on the mound. The junior lefty scattered seven hits while striking out two and walking one. Freshman Devin Beckley went the final two frames and did not allow a hit or a run while fanning four batters.
The visitors scored two runs in the first inning as Lawson Stokes drove a two-out solo home run to left field to give CHS a 1-0 lead. Austen Haney then rapped a single, stole second and scored on Tucker’s single.
With the game tied at 2-2, Camden scored twice in the fourth as Hough smacked a leadoff double and would score on Abbott’s double. Abbott would score the fourth Bulldog run as he came in when Morgan’s grounder was booted for an error.
Camden raised its lead to 5-2 with a run in the fifth as Tucker was hit by a pitch before being lifted for courtesy runner William Spring, who went to third on an errant throw on a pickoff play. Spring scored on a Hough single.
The Dogs rapped out 13 hits on the night. In addition to Hough’s night, which gave him six RBI in three games, Abbott had two hits and drove in a pair of runs while Tucker enjoyed a two-hit game.
Beckley said he liked how his team responded after a slow start in a loss to River Bluff last Tuesday in beating Dreher and Westwood on consecutive nights. He hopes his team can build on that momentum this week in the Kershaw-Richland wooden bat tournament.
“Last year,” Beckley said, “playing in the tournament and using wood bats really helped us get into a better rhythm at the plate. When you use wood bats, your balance needs to be better at the plate.
“We also hope it will help us in our consistency, which is something we have preached all season. We need to stay focused and keep fighting. If we can do that, we hope that it will carry through for the rest of the season.”

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