Pirates end Warriors' 13-game win streak
Porter Ridge High's baseball team scored three runs in the top of the sixth inning to upset Weddington, 4-2, on the road Tuesday night.
The loss ends a 13-game winning streak for the Warriors, who won the 3A state title in 2012.
The Pirates (11-7, 7-3 in Southern Carolina Conference) fell behind 2-1 after Alex Bostic's solo home run to left field with two outs in the bottom of the fifth.
WHS (14-5, 9-1 SCC) starting pitcher Josh Islam gave up singles to Jake Sullivan and Chase Shuford to start the sixth and loaded the bases with a walk to Drew Moore one out later.
That ended Islam's night, bringing on reliever Cameron Smetak, who tried to pick Sullivan off at third but instead threw the ball in the dirt. Sullivan and Shuford's courtesy runner, CJ Fernandez, scored on the play, giving PR a 3-2 lead.
Smetak's first pitch was in the dirt and careened off catcher Jake Ferry, allowing Moore to score from third. Smetak struck out the next two batters.
Throughout the game Shuford, Porter Ridge's starter, was working well outside of a third inning solo shot by Daniel Calabretta and Bostic's homer.
Shuford got Calabretta to pop out in the seventh and struck out Bostic to end the game.
Shuford threw 111 pitches for the complete-game victory, allowing five hits and striking out two while walking two.
"I wasn't throwing my curveball for a strike at all," Shuford said. "I threw fastballs all night basically. I was just hitting spots and getting out of tough situations with runners in scoring position."
The Pirates took a quick lead with Zach Blalock's lead off single to start the game followed an out and a steal later by Jake Sullivan's single off the third base bag to take a 1-0 lead.
It didn't look good for the Pirates, who ended a three game losing streak, after the Warriors took the lead with Islam not giving up a hit from the second through the fifth innings.
"We wanted to make no errors and we didn't make any," Shuford said. "We wanted to put some runs on the board, get a bunch of base runners and we did that. We made them make plays and they didn't make them."
The victory keeps the Pirates' hopes of tying for a regular season conference championship alive but with the chance of Marvin Ridge losing three or more games to end the season the focus is on building momentum in the final two weeks of the regular season.
"The boys came back and battled with Chase not having his best stuff but he kept us in the game," Pirates coach Trey Staviski said. "We kept getting runners on base and it was a matter of time that we were eventually going to score. That error at third was huge.
"If we just keep playing our game, like tonight making no errors. If we keep playing the game that these kids are capable of playing, I'm pretty confident going into the conference tournament and into the state playoffs."
Sullivan finished 2-for-3 at the plate to lead the Pirates.
Bostic and Calabretta each went 2-for-4 with a single and a home run.
Islam took the loss going five and a third innings with four hits, four runs (one earned), four walks (one intentional) and three strikeouts.