Head coach Nick English and his Upson-Lee Middle School Knights baseball team headed into Thursday’s contest with Byron Middle School with a 4-5 record. However, after Trace Park and Tripp Greer combined for six hits, two RBI, and six runs scored, the Knights had scored 12 runs, just enough to earn a 12-11 victory.
The Knights jumped all over the Eagles from Peach County in the early stages of the game. After a scoreless top of the first inning, the Knights took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first.
Tripp Greer, who tallied a team high four hits in the game, led off with a bunt single, and then stole second and third bases. Later in the inning Greer came home to score on a wild pitch, giving ULMS a 1-0 lead. Tanner Crews added a double later in the inning, but was stranded on the bases.
In the bottom of the third inning, the Knights added to their 1-0 lead and once again it was Greer who got the inning started for the Knights. After a line drive single to left field to start the inning, Greer stole second base. Trace Park followed with a RBI double to left field, giving the Knights a 2-0 lead. Joseph Nelson followed by drawing a walk, and then a RBI single from Joshua Fordham gave ULMS a 3-0 lead.
Later in the inning, Matt Screws got on base after reaching on a fielder’s choice, and then stole second base. With runners at second and third, first baseman Barron Gulley stroked a two RBI single to right to give the Knights a 5-0 lead.
In the top of the fourth inning, the Eagles scored three runs on three hits, a walk from Trace Park and a fielding error by the Knights. As the Knights headed into the bottom of the fourth inning, their lead had been cut to 5-3. However, in the bottom of the fourth inning, the Knight added three more runs to the board. Landon Fowler led off with a ringing double to left field, followed by a RBI single from Tripp Greer, giving the Knights a 6-3 lead. Trace Park then connected on his second hit of the game with a single. On the very next pitch, the Knights executed a double steal, as Greer took third base and Park took second base.
With runners at second and third, Joseph Nelson reached on a throwing error, an error which scored two more runs, giving the Knights an 8-3 lead.
The Knights seemingly put the game away in the bottom of the fifth inning, scoring three more runs and taking an 11-3 lead. Noah Turner drew a walk to start the inning and then stole second base. Landon Fowler was then hit by a pitch, and Tripp Greer has hit fourth hit of the game with a bunt single to load the bases. With the bases loaded, Turner scored on a wild pitch to give the Knights a 9-3 lead, and then Tanner Crews broke the game open with a two-run double, making the Knights lead 11-3.
Trailing by eight runs in the top of the sixth inning, the Eagles bowed their necks and fought back, putting three runs on the board on four hits and another fielding error by the Knights
With their lead cut to 11-6, the Knights added another run after Matt Screws reached on a walk, stole a couple of bases, and came home to score on a wild pitch, giving ULMS a 12-6 lead.
Down to their last three outs, the Eagles scored five runs in the top of the seventh inning. Just about anything that could happen in a baseball game did so in the top of the seventh inning. The Knights gave up three hits, hit two batters, walked two batters, and made two fielding errors. However, the seemingly meaningless run which the Knights scored on a wild pitch in the bottom of the sixth, proved to be the winning run, as the Knights held on for a 12-11 victory.
Tripp Greer paced the Knights with four hits, a RBI, and four runs scored. Trace Park added two hits, a RBI, and two runs scored. Tanner Crews connected on two hits and a RBI, while Barron Gulley had a hit and 2 RBI. Landon Fowler finished with a hit and two runs scored, Josh Fordham added a hit and RBI, while Trevor Crews chipped in with one hit in the victory.
The ULMS Knights will host Crawford County Middle School today at 4:30 p.m.