Bulldogs claim top spot in area with win

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 19, 2001

Sports Writer

BRUNDIDGE – Elijah Daniels went 3-for-4 and scored two runs as the Pike County High School Bulldogs defeated the Luverne High School Tigers 8-4 in an important Class 3A Area 2 baseball matchup on a cool and blustery day in Brundidge Tuesday afternoon.

With the victory, the Bulldogs edged to closer toward clinching their fourth state playoff berth in the last five years. As a result of Tuesday’s win, Pike County moved into solo possession of first place at 2-1 in the area (5-11 overall) followed by Luverne at 2-2 (8-5) in second place and Elba in third 1-2 (4-10). The Bulldogs close out area play this afternoon with another critical game at Elba this afternoon at 4:30 p.m.

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If Pike County wins today, they will be the outright area champions earning the right to host a first round 3A state playoff single elimination playoff game Wednesday afternoon. However, a loss to Elba will create a three-way tie at 2-2 meaning the area champion and area runner-up will be determined by a series of tiebreakers.

In the bottom of third, the Bulldogs scored two runs to take the lead for good as they never looked back. After Brian Kilpatrick led off with a infield hit, Elijah Daniels following with a single of his own to put runners on first and second with nobody out. After back-to-back wild pitches by Hilburn, Kilpatrick scored to give PCHS a 2-1 lead. Two batters later, Joshua Daniels delivered a RBI single bringing in Kilpatrick to cap the scoring.

Leading 3-1 in the bottom of the fourth, the Bulldogs got the decisive tallies they needed scoring two runs. With one out, Bell singled, stole second, advanced to third on a ground out by Jimmy Evans and scored on Anthony Kilpatrick’s RBI double to left center field. One batter later, Anthony’s older brother laced a RBI single up the middle to cap the inning.

In the bottom of the fifth, the Bulldogs continued to gradually pull away scoring two runs when Chris Nickson singled, stole second and advanced to third on an error before scoring on a wild pitch. After Bell was hit by a pitch, Evans delivered an RBI triple to cap the inning.

PCHS head coach Fred Holland said he was pleased with the offensive output the Bulldogs displayed scoring at least one run in the last five innings.

"We try to score every inning to put pressure on teams in order to get momentum," Holland said. "We were a little more focused realizing it was a area game. This win really means a lot because we made a lot of mistakes over there. We did a good job of getting people home when they were in scoring position."