North Rallies Late To Win, Earn Split In All-Star Baseball
MONTGOMERY – The North All-Stars rallied from an 8-3 deficit in the top of the seventh inning to plate six runs and post a 9-8 win over the South to gain a split in the All-Star Sports Week North-South baseball series played at Riverwalk Stadium Tuesday night. The South posted a 2-1 win in the first game.
North 9, South 8 (Box Score)
The South appeared to be in command of game two after scoring five runs in the bottom of the second. The big hit was a bases-loaded triple by Opelika’s Matthew Christian.
Payton Stracener of Colbert County got the rally started when Christian, pitching in relief, hit him with a two-strike pitch. Hoover’s Trey Davis doubled for his second hit of the game and third of the doubleheader to put runners on second and third. Stracener was thrown out at home on a fielder’s choice, Oneonta’s Luke Wall singled, and Joseph McCormick of Oak Mountain followed with a two-run single.
Dalton Cobb of Alexandria drove in one run and Carson Cupo plated two with triples to close out the rally.
Stephan Poplin of Thompson hurled the final two innings, allowing no hits, no runs and striking out two to get the win. Christian got the loss.
Hewitt-Trussville’s Carter Pharis also had as triple for the North, which finished with three for the game.
Davis was named the North MVP and Chase Smart of Charles Henderson, the South MVP.
South 2, North 1 (Box Score)
Smartt, the South catcher who helped Charles Henderson claim the 2013 and 2014 Class 4A state baseball titles, slugged a double in the first inning and drove in both South runs in the top of the fifth with a single to break open a scoreless tie.
Smartt drove in UMS-Wright’s Brett Patterson, who reached on a walk, and Marbury’s Jared Dixon, who followed with a single.
The North managed all three of its first-game hits in the bottom of the fifth with Sylacauga’s Will Green socking a double, Stracener following with a single and Hoover’s Davis plating Green with a single.
Alabama Christian’s Chandler Taylor hurled three hitless innings to start the game for the South. Dothan’s Reid Agrella got the win. Green got the loss. Headland's Sam Harrison came on in relief to pitch 1 2/3 innings in the fifth and sixth, and Luverne's Austin Odom hurled the seventh for the south to get the save.
The North holds an 18-11-1 edge in the series which dates back to 1997.