Trinity outlasts ACCS in 10-inning marathon

Published 1:26 am Wednesday, April 9, 2008

NATCHEZ — In a marathon game between two district rivals that lasted nearly four hours, it was ACCS that finally ran out of gas.

The Trinity Saints took a stranglehold on first place in District 3-AA with a 13-8 win over the Rebels in 10 innings Tuesday night.

Trinity (15-4, 7-1) needs only to win one of two games against ACCS (10-8, 5-3) Saturday at Chester Willis Field in order to claim the district championship.

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It looked like ACCS was going to move into a tie for first place in the district Tuesday as the Saints were down to their final strike in the top of the seventh inning.

With a runner on third, trailing 6-5 and a full count, Wells Middleton bounced a single back up the middle to tie the game and send it to extra innings.

“Wells doesn’t understand what pressure means,” Trinity coach Matt Mason said. “He went to the plate and got the job done for us.”

Clint Easom gave Trinity the lead in the top of the eighth with a solo home run, but ACCS tied the score back up in the bottom of the inning when Hunter Havard scored on a single by Luke Brumfield.

The Rebels had numerous chances to win the game, but stranded potential game-winning runners in scoring position in the seventh, eighth and ninth innings.

“We hit the ball well, but when timely hits were needed, we struggled,” ACCS coach Hunter McKievier said. “Trinity is well-coached and very talented, and that’s why their record is the way it is.”

After a scoreless ninth inning, Easom led off the 10th with his second homer of the game and only his third of the season. His homer came after he failed twice to get a bunt down.

“I usually don’t hit home runs consistently,” Easom said. “I was trying to get on base and get the inning started with a bunt, but now I’m glad I didn’t get them down.”

After Easom’s home run, the floodgates opened for the Saints.

Matthew Freeman had an RBI double while an error and two bases-loaded walks allowed three more runs to score before Easom finished off the inning with a sacrifice fly.

ACCS got one run back in the bottom of the 10th on a sac fly by Cory Emanuel but it wasn’t nearly enough.

“These kids are winners,” Mason said. “They never gave up. They were down to their last pitch in the seventh and kept battling and found a way to win.”

Brian Sanderson and Freeman were both 3-for-5 for Trinity while Kent King and Easom were both 2-for-6.

Hunter Russ led ACCS at the place with a 4-for-5 performance. T.J. Johnson was 3-for-4 for the Rebels while Havard was 2-for-4.