Blue Devils move on

Published 7:00 am Tuesday, May 6, 2014

CARRIERE — Pearl River Central needed three games to wrap up it second round Class 5A South State series against Wayne County.

The Blue Devils used a seven run rally in the bottom of the fifth inning to overcome a 3-1 deficit and pull out an 8-5 win in the deciding game against the visiting War Eagles.

The win moved head coach Neil Walther’s squad to an impressive 23-6 overall, but more importantly moves the Blue Devils into the Class 5A South State semifinals for just the third time in school history.

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Pearl River Central will face upstart West Jones, who upset South favorite George County in three games over the weekend. The Blue Devils will host the Mustangs Friday night at 7 in the opening game of the best of three series.

“We did what we had to do,” Walther said. “The kids came up with a big inning when we had to have it.”

Cody Miller (5-2) went the distance for the Devils, scattering 10 hits while striking out six to beat the War Eagles.

Pearl River Central struck first when Christian Smith led off the bottom of the first with a single to right, stole second, and was moved up to third by a sacrifice bunt by Wesley Mitchell. He would score four pitches later when Christian Travis doubled into left center to put the Devils up 1-0.

The War Eagles used four singles and a sacrifice fly to score three runs and take a 3-1 lead.

The big fifth frame rally for PRC began with Travis and Dylan Spiers leading off the inning with Walks. Both would score when Mason Songy doubled into right center past a diving centerfielder to make it 3-3.

Cody Lee followed that by reaching on an infield error which moved pinch runner Nick Newman to third base. Newman would score the go ahead run when a wild pitch got by the catcher, moving Lee to second. Caleb Morales then singled to left to score Lee, and Zach Evans followed with a bunt single.

Christian Smith’s double down the line on the next pitch scored Morales to make the score 6-3. After a Wesley Mitchell sacrifice fly, Travis delivered his second RBI of the day with a single to left scoring Smith to make the score 8-3.

After The War Eagles cut the deficit to 8-5 with a pair of runs in the fifth, Miller retired Wayne County in order in both the sixth and seventh stanzas to seal the win.

Christian Smith, Christian Travis, and Zach Evans each had two hits on the day, while Travis and Songy each knocked in two runs apiece.