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Demons run win streak to three

Posted: March 30, 2017 11:34 a.m.
Updated: March 31, 2017 1:00 a.m.
Tom Didato/C-I

NOAH RABON HAD THREE hits for Lugoff-Elgin in Tuesday’s 3-0 win over Lakewood.

Having lost two games to Hartsville last week, the Lugoff-Elgin baseball team has work to do and will need plenty of help if they have a chance at winning the Region 6-4A title.

The Demons took a step in the right direction on Tuesday as Bradwin Salmond fired a complete game four hitter at Lakewood as the guests improved to 3-2 in conference play with a 3-0 win over the Gators.

Salmond’s performance came a night after junior classsmate Chase Roberts threw six innings of no-hit ball in a 6-3, non-league win at Midland Valley.

L-E head coach Randy Stokes, whose team scored single runs in the second, sixth and seventh frames against LHS, said his offense fell victim to fly ball outs and strong defensive play on the part of the hosts.

“We hit a lot of fly balls and their outfielders made three diving catches on line drives; we hit some long and deep fly balls,” he said. “Our guys made some adjustments at the plate as the game went on and we got on top of the ball and started hitting some line drives. I was real proud of the adjustments we made at the plate.”

Salmond, a junior righty, needed just 81 pitches on a night in which he allowed four hits while fanning eight. Three of those hits came in succession in the bottom of the third when the Gators loaded the bases.

The Demons scored a run in the second as Justin Dorton drew a walk, stole second and scored from third on a Bryce Padgett infield single. In the sixth, Noah Rabon belted a leadoff double and would score on a Roberts sacrifice fly to make it 2-0.

L-E (9-6) tacked on a third run in the seventh as Hunter Coleman singled, stole second and scored on Rabon’s single to left center.

Rabon continued to swing a hot bat with the junior going 3-for-4.

“Noah is really coming on and he is playing well at third base, too,” Stokes said. “He can play left field, right field, third base and will play second base when (Zac) Branham pitches. We just have to keep him in our lineup.”

Against Midland Valley, Roberts threw 104 pitches before being removed after six innings of work. The lefty fanned nine and walked four and all those walks came in deep counts.

Stokes said the Clemson commit was in control the entire night.

“This was Chase’s first start of the season and, we didn’t know what to expect from him,” said the L-E boss. “He had a dominant fastball and threw with a lot of velocity and commanded the strike zone. He just overpowered them with a fastball which was about 88 to 90 (miles per hour.) He also threw his off-speed stuff for strikes to keep their batters honest.”

After the hosts scored an unearned run in the second, the Demons answered with a pair in the third as Coleman doubled and scored on a Roberts triple down the right field line. A Branham single plated Roberts to make it 2-1.

The Demons backed up Roberts with four runs in the sixth with Chase Galloway getting a leadoff walk. Dorton then bunted courtesy runner Josh Boone to second. Jake Laffin then got on via an error. With runners on second and third, Coleman drove the two runners home with a single to left. After being balked to second, Coleman scored on Rabon’s single to left center to make it 5-1. Rabon scored the final run when a Salmond ground ball was played into a run-scoring error.

Coleman and Roberts each had a pair of hits for the guests.

The Demons are scheduled to host Lakewood tonight in a 6:30 p.m. start to close the two-game region series.

 

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