Green Wave shakes off rust to beat Bulldogs

Published 12:00 am Thursday, March 8, 2001

After a two week stretch of no games and little practice time, Cathedral Head Coach Ken Beasley expected his squad to be a little rusty, but the Green Wave was still able to escape with a 3-1 win over Harrisburg thanks to a strong outing by starting pitcher Chris Norris and the play of the defense behind him.

The win lifts Cathedral into the semifinals of the Vidalia Tournament on Saturday at 11 a.m., but first up is an important district game on the road at Richland.

&uot;I hope we learned our lesson tonight,&uot; Beasley said. &uot;When you have the opportunity to score, you have to make the most of it or it will come back to haunt you.&uot;

That was almost the case in the win over Harrisonburg as the Green Wave came close to blowing a 3-0 lead in the top of the seventh.

Harrisonburg opened the frame with back-to-back singles by Jessie Ainsworth and Lee McGuffee. The next batter flied out before Chris Norris was pulled in favor Charlie Norris for the final two outs. Consecutive free passes loaded the bases and cut the lead to 3-1 before Cathedral was able to record the final outs of the game on a ground ball to the pitcher and a strike out.

The Green Wave scored all the runs it would need in the bottom of the second. Key Smith got things started with a single. Later in the inning Clay Hammons picked up 2 RBI with a single of his own before Scott McLemore closed out the scoring with an RBI double.

Cathedral had a couple of opportunities to build on the lead, but was unable to come up with the key hit with runners in scoring position in the fourth and fifth innings.

Chris Norris picked up the win with 6 1/3 innings of work. He allowed only 1 run and 4 hits while striking out seven batters.

&uot;Except for the final inning I thought our defense looked good,&uot; Beasley said. &uot;We also got a big game from Chris Norris. I know he wanted to finish the game, but I thought he was getting a little tired, and I went with Charlie in the seventh.&uot;