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Hertford County stops Ridgecroft

AHOSKIE – Tyler Burden tossed a four-hitter Thursday to lead Hertford County past Ridgecroft School 15-5.

The Bears also scored 10 runs in the first inning to break open the non-conference baseball game.

Burden started the first inning with a bunt single before Marvin Harrell singled to left. Burden was tagged out in a rundown between second and third, however.

Daniel Merritt reached on an error sending Harrell to second. Both scored when Brandon Warren ripped a two-run triple to right-centerfield.

Tyler Pryor walked before Warren came around to score on a wild pitch to make it 3-0.

Mitchell Godwin walked and then Pryor scored when Montario Hunter reached first on an error. Petey Boone then singled to load the bases.

Courtesy runner Anthony Fitzhugh scored on a Brandon Staton infield single and then Hunter scored when Burden reached on an error to make it 6-0. Boone and Staton came around on a two-run single to left by Harrell.

Merritt then walked to reload the bases. Burden and Harrell came around to score when Warren reached on an error to establish the 10-0 lead.

Ridgecroft answered with four runs in the top of the second stanza.

Blake Sumner and Austin Britton drew successive walks. Both runners came around to score when Josh Lane reached first on an error.

Scott Lowe and Miles Harrell then walked to load the bases. Courtesy runner Jordan Harrell and Lowe both scored on a Chase Riddick double to right field as the Rams closed within 10-4.

HCHS added a run in the bottom of the second stanza.

Godwin and Hunter had back-to-back singles before Boone reached on a fielder’s choice. Godwin scored when Burden reached via error as the Bears moved ahead 11-4.

Ridgecroft then added one run in the top of the third inning.

Nathan Pearce singled to left and Blake Sumner drew a walk. Both runners advanced on a wild pitch. Pearce then scored when Britton reached on an error closing the Ridgecroft gap to 11-5.

Hertford County, however, added two runs of their own in the bottom of the third inning.

Merritt singled on the infield before Warren delivered a base hit to left field. Pryor was then hit by a pitch to load the bases.

Merritt scored on an RBI-groundout by Godwin and Warren scored when Hunter reached on an error giving the Bears a 13-5 lead.

HCHS scored the final two runs of the game in the home half of the fourth.

Burden and Harrell walked and then advanced on a wild pitch. Burden scored on a Merritt RBI-groundout and Harrell scored on a wild pitch to give the Bears a 15-5 edge.

Ridgecroft failed to score in the top of the fifth, ending the game.

Burden pitched five innings for the win. He allowed five runs on four hits and struck out eight. Blake Sumner, Harrell and Braxton Sumner all pitched for the Rams.

Hertford County had 10 hits led by Harrell and Wilson who recorded two hits each.

“Tyler Burden pitched a great game,” HCHS Head Coach Chris Towell said. “We put the bat on the ball and took advantage of Ridgecroft’s mistakes. We are taking it one game at a time.

“We also played good defense,” Towell stated. “Everybody is contributing for us.”

Hertford County improved to 5-0 overall heading into Monday’s game at Nash Central. They will host Northeastern Coastal Conference rival First Flight Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Ridgecroft dropped to 2-4 overall.