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Wildcats steal the deal with slide-off win
Stolen base in eighth lifts LHS past Demons, 7-6
Hayes slides.JPG
LUGOFF-ELGINS AUSTIN HAYES slides safely into home plate with the Demons second run in Thursdays 4A District 5 tournament game with Lexington, whose catcher, Nick Ciuffo, corrals the late throw from left field on a third inning sacrifice fly off the bat of Danny Bowen. - photo by C-I photo by Tom Didato
LEXINGTON -- It was a daring move which, when completed, a coach is greeted either by a jubilant team or, an angry group of second-guessers.A gutsy call by Lexington High baseball call Brian Hucks led to Zach Paquette’s delayed steal of home with two gone in the bottom of the eighth with two strikes on pinch-hitter Brandon Camp in Thursday’s 4A District 5 championship game with Lugoff-Elgin.The swipe, with the score knotted at six, propelled the top-ranked Wildcats into the 4A Upper State tournament. It also left a game Demons’ squad stunned as they gathered themselves for the traditional shaking of hands after the gut-wrenching 7-6 loss.No person had a better view of the play unfolding than did L-E head coach Randy Stokes, who had one eye on the movements of Paquette along the third base line and another fixed on Camp and L-E catcher, Austin Hayes.Taylor Lunsford, who worked a complete game after having pitched an inning of relief ball the previous night in a nine-inning, 6-3 win over Ashley Ridge, completely fooled Camp who swatted in vain at an off-speed inside curveball for the second strike. Camp then hopped out of the batter’s box on an injured leg.