Walking off: Steed’s double lifts Patriots over the Generals

Published 9:10 pm Friday, March 1, 2019

Holt Steed came off the bench and hit a game-winning double in Pike Liberal Arts’ 5-4 win over Abbeville Christian in the opening game of the Jonah McWaters Tournament on Friday afternoon in Troy.

Despite letting a three-run lead slip away, as well as dealing with a lengthy rain delay, the Patriots pulled out their first win of the tournament.

The teams went into the bottom of the seventh tied at 4-4. Jade Sikes hit a one-out double to left centerfield, putting the winning run in scoring position. Steed, fresh off the bench, ripped a game-winning double to nearly the same position in left centerfield.

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Sophomore Tripp Spivey got the start for the Patriots and, despite the lengthy delay, he earned a complete game win over the Generals. In his seven innings of work, Spivey allowed just one earned run, four overall on six hits and two walks. He struck out six batters.

The Patriots jumped on the Generals in the first inning and scored the first two runs of the game.

Four straight Patriot batters reached to begin the bottom of the first inning. The Patriots scratched across their first run when Levi Sikes was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded to bring in leadoff hitter Cody Hollis.

The Patriot lead grew to 3-0 in the bottom of the second inning. Hollis became the third Patriot batter to be hit by a pitch in the first two innings. He came around to score on a double by Drew Nelson.

The Generals battled back to tie the game in the third with the help of the Patriot defense. The Patriot defense committed four errors in the inning, leading to three General Runs.

After a scoreless bottom of the third inning, the rain arrived, causing the tarp to cover the field for a lengthy rain delay. After the delay, Ponder elected to keep Spivey on the mound. Spivey got the Generals out 1-2-3 in the top half of the fourth inning.

Spivey’s offense gave him the lead right back in the bottom of the fourth when Levi Sikes hit a sacrifice fly to left field to drive in Nelson, bringing the score to 4-3.

The Generals had their sights on tying the score in the sixth when they had a leadoff double. Spivey battled back and struck out the side, preserving his one-run lead.

The Generals were down to their last out and their last strike in the top of the seventh inning. The Generals ripped a double to even the game at four.

The Patriots rallied in the bottom of the inning to pick up their first win of the tournament.

The Patriots finished with nine hits. Nelson and Jade Sikes each picked up two hits, while Hollis, Davis Allen, Tripp Spivey, Steed and Hunter Keenan each had one.

The Patriots were scheduled to take on Tuscaloosa Christian late on Friday night. For continuing coverage of the Jonah McWaters Tournament visit www.Troymessenger.com.