Bethel evens baseball record

Published 4:00 pm Wednesday, March 30, 2011

WINDSOR – Persistence always pays off.

Bethel Christian Academy played back-and-forth with Victory Christian Tuesday at Davis Park in Windsor Tuesday before finally breaking open a close game and coasting on to a 12-7 win and raising their record to 2-2.

Right-hander Shane Tripp got the victory on the mound in relief. In addition, he was also 2-for-3 at the plate, scored twice and drove in three runs.

Kevin Johnson and Tommy Cowan were 2-for-4 at the dish with Cowan driving in a pair of runs and Johnson, Michael Miller and Trent Davidson driving in a run apiece.  Meanwhile, speedy lead-off man Joseph Ginn scored four of the Eagles’ dozen runs.

Bethel scored at least one run in every inning.

“(Shane) pitched real good,” said Bethel coach Ronald Cullipher, “I’m real proud of him.

“It was a tough game, back and forth for a while,” he added, “but we ended it very well.”

After the visitors from Elizabeth City carved out a run in the top of the first inning, Bethel came back in their half of the frame to push across the equalizer.  The Eagles loaded the bases with no one out before Johnson’s base-hit up the middle plated Ginn for a 1-1 score.

Following a scoreless second inning for Victory, Bethel sent nine men to the plate in their portion of the second and plated three runs.

With two out and two on, Tripp delivered a double to left-centerfield that rattled off the outfield wall and plated a pair.  Cowan followed and brought Tripp home with a shot into the gap in right-center and a 4-1 lead for the Eagles.

The Eagles of Victory had their best outing in the third inning when they touched up starter Tommy Cowan for four runs on a trio of hits while sending 10 men to the plate and recaptured the lead, 5-4.

Bethel again tied it in the bottom of the third with back-to-back one-out singles from Davidson and Chandler Cullipher. Two batters later, Tripp got his final ribbie of the day that plated Davidson and made it 5-5.

Back comes Victory with a pair of runs in the top of the fourth, one of them unearned to lead once again, 7-5.

Bethel tied it for a third time on the afternoon when Miller and Davidson plated runs to make it 7-7 with three innings to play.

That’s when Bethel rose up: first, they got four runs in the top of the fifth inning, three of them unearned, to surge ahead, 11-to-7.  Then Tripp helped his own cause by pitching out of a bases-loaded jam in the top of the sixth.

The Eagles from Askewville added one more run in the bottom of the sixth before Tripp retired the side in order and Bethel had evened their record on the short season.

“Our bats have been better,” said Cullipher, “but they pulled it out by laying some hits down there toward the last of the game to come through and I’m proud of them.

“We can do better than we showed today,” he concluded, “but we’re getting better with each game.”

Bethel takes to the road today (Thursday) when they play at Northeast Academy in Lasker in a 4 p.m. contest, weather permitting.