Rams secure tourney title

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, April 25, 2006

ROANOKE RAPIDS – Dustin Baker delivered a game winning RBI-single in the fifth here Friday night.

That hit, along with the pitching performance of Josh Morris, lifted Ridgecroft to a 5-4 victory over Halifax Academy in the Halifax Easter Tournament championship game.

Trailing 4-2 headed into the bottom of the fifth, Ridgecroft plated three runs to rally for the victory.

Matthew Jones was hit by a pitch and went to second on a Jeremy Courtright infield single. Jones came around to score on a Gavin Mizelle RBI-single to left.

After Courtright and Mizelle advanced on a wild pitch, they both scored on Baker’s game-winning hit that made it 5-4.

Morris, who pitched all seven innings, kept the Vikings off the board for the rest of the contest to preserve the win. He surrendered four runs on eight hits while striking out 16.

&uot;I felt like I was getting stronger as the game went on,&uot; Morris said. &uot;We battled back. I wanted to throw strikes and keep us in the game.&uot;

Halifax took the early lead in the contest with a run in the top of the second on a Chris Clay RBI-single.

They added two in the top of the third. Nick Short and Dane Wolgemuth both had RBI-doubles to give the Vikings a 3-0 lead.

Ridgecroft got on the board in the bottom of the third inning.

Courtright singled to center before Gavin Mizelle hit a two-run bomb to left-centerfield to make it 3-2.

Halifax scored the final run they would get in the top of the fourth frame on a Short RBI-single that gave Halifax the 4-2 advantage.

Offensively, Baker led the Rams with a 2-for-2 performance including two RBIs. Mizelle was 2-for-3 with three RBIs and Courtright was 2-for-3. The three accounted for six of Ridgecroft’s eight hits.

&uot;We fell behind, but I thought Josh was pitching well,&uot; RHS skipper Richard Murray said. &uot;We started swinging the bats and came back. This was a nice victory for us.&uot;

Ridgecroft improved to 10-2 with the win and will play at Hobgood Academy today (Tuesday) in a Tarheel Independent Conference game.