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PC splits with Cherokee

By Staff
Slade Gilmer
For the FCT
PHIL CAMPBELL – The Phil Campbell baseball team split a home doubleheader with area rival Cherokee, losing the first game 9-6 before winning the nightcap 17-11.
In the first game Jordan Benford led off the bottom of the first with a triple, and came home on Seth Brown's sacrifice fly to give the Bobcats a 1-0 lead.
Benford started the game strong on the mound as well, striking out two and allowing only one hit through the first two innings. In the top of the third, however, a hit batter and a bunt single gave Cherokee runners on first and second.
After a wild pitch and a short flyout to centerfielder Adam Mitchell, the Bobcats were one strike away from getting out of the inning before an Indian batter smashed a three-run homer to give the Indians a 3-1 lead.
Cherokee added a run in both the top of the fourth and fifth innings to take a 5-1 lead.
Phil Campbell rallied with Benford walking to lead off the inning. Jake Dill then grounded into a fielder's choice, but a bad throw by the shortstop made both runners safe.
After a groundout by Mitchell put the runners on second and third, a passed ball allowed Benford to score. Mitchell scored when Ben Stancil grounded into a fielder's choice, and he scored on an errant throw by the shortstop later in the inning to cut the lead to 5-4.
The Indians responded with four runs in the top of the sixth on two singles, an RBI groundout and a passed ball that allowed two runners to score.
The Bobcats threatened in the bottom of the sixth, with the first three hitters reaching on singles to load the bases. Unfortunately, the next three men struck out to end the threat and leave the score 9-4.
Phil Campbell scored two runs in the bottom of the seventh, one on Bailey Welborn's RBI single and the other on Dill's RBI groundout, but it wasn't enough to overcome the large deficit.
Welborn led the Bobcats with three singles, while Benford added a triple and a single. Dill had the only other hit, a single in the sixth.
Benford also went the distance in the loss, striking out two.
In the nightcap, the Bobcats fell behind 1-0 on an Indian home run in the top of the first.
Phil Campbell answered when Cameron Harris drew a walk, moved to second on Brown's walk and scored on Stancil's single.
Phil Campbell tacked on two more in the second, when Justin Thompson drew a walk and Trent Jones singled him to second. Thompson scored on Austin Jones' double before Trent Jones scored on Harris' groundout.
The Indians scored a run to cut the lead to 3-2 in the top of the third, but the Bobcats responded with three of their own.
Ryan Champion and Thompson led off the inning with two walks. Trent Jones grounded into a forceout at third to retire Champion, but Thompson scored on Welborn's single. The catcher threw out Trent Jones at third, but Austin Jones singled in Welborn and scored on a passed ball later in the inning.
After Cherokee scored five runs to take a 7-6 lead, the Bobcats took the lead for good with five of their own.
Stancil and Champion each singled to lead off the inning. With Thompson batting, Stancil scored the tying run on a passed ball. Thompson and Trent Jones then drew back-to-back walks to load the bases.
Welborn then hit a double to score Thompson and Champion, and Trent Jones scored on Austin Jones' sacrifice fly to give Phil Campbell an 11-7 lead.
Phil Campbell added to its lead in the bottom of the fifth when Stancil reached on a fielder's choice, stole second, moved to third on a sacrifice by Champion and scored on a passed ball to take a 12-7 lead.
After the Indians scored a run to cut the Bobcat advantage to 12-8, Phil Campbell responded with five runs to put the game away.
Trent Jones led off the inning with a walk and Welborn added a single. Austin Jones then moved to first after being hit by a pitch. Mitchell – pinch-hitting for Harris – then popped out to short.
Dill then added a sacrifice fly to make the score 13-8.
Seth Brown singled to drive in Welborn and Stancil tripled to drive Austin Jones and Brown home. Stancil closed out the scoring for Phil Campbell by scoring on a passed ball.
Cherokee scored three in the top of the seventh to provide the final margin.
Stancil led the way for the Bobcats with two singles and a triple, while Welborn added two singles and a double. Austin Jones added a single and a double, while Trent Jones, Champion, and Brown each added a single.