Having fun at regionals

Published 12:03 am Saturday, July 14, 2012

Opp's Dawson Booth (9) and his teammates celebrate after his inside-the-park home run against Heritage Havoc, Tenn., Friday. | Andrew Garner/Star-News

Opp’s 8 and under All-Stars forgot what happened Thursday, and came to play the next day in the Cal Ripken Southeast Regional Baseball Tournament.

The Bobcats bounced back from a 25-0 loss to Okeeheelee, Fla., and played their hearts out in an 8-6 win over Heritage Havoc, Tenn., in the first game of the day on Friday.

However, Opp (1-2 in pool play) would end up splitting in action, falling 9-6 in the night cap to Laurinburg, Tenn.

Opp will play its final pool play game today at 9 a.m. against District 1, S.C. If the Bobcats win, they’ll finish pool play 2-2, and might have a chance to play in bracket play later tonight

Opp 9, Heritage Havoc, Tenn. 6

Opp’s Dawson Booth hit a three-run, inside-the-park home run in the first inning, and the Bobcats executed a well-played double play in the sixth to come away with their first win of the tournament over Heritage Havoc, Tenn.

“We’ve had a good time,” Cox said about his team’s excitement during play. “We really have. We’ve been glad to have the opportunity to come play in the regional. We’ve gained a lot to see how we stacked up with other teams from out of state.”

Opp led 4-0 after the first inning and bolted to a 5-0 lead after two innings.

But, Heritage Havoc scored six runs in the third to take the second lead change of the game.

Opp didn’t waiver and scored two runs in the fourth and one run in the fifth, while holding the Havoc to no runs in the final three innings of play.

Walt Spurlin went 3-for-3 with three singles; Landen Rogers went 3-for-4 with a double and two runs; and J.T. Dee went 2-for-3 with two singles to lead Opp.

For Heritage Havoc, Brandy Pierce went 2-for-3 with a run; Logan Molnar went 2-for-3 with a triple and a run; and Auston Kincaid went 2-for-3 with two singles.

Heritage Havoc scored six runs in the third inning on five hits.

Laurinburg, Tenn. 9, Opp 6

The Bobcats skewered to a 3-0 lead early in the contest, but a rare occurrence took place in the pitcher’s mound.

As the official drew the pitching machine back, it broke in two pieces. Time was called, and eventually a new machine was installed.

With a new pitching machine, Laurinburg took advantage and tied the game up 3-all at the mid-way point of the game.

Opp took a 6-3 to the bottom of the fifth, and Laurinburg answered with six runs and took its first lead of the game.

“They hit the ball,” Opp 8U coach Andy Cox said about Laurinburg. “It was a good team that we played.”

Throughout the contest, both teams were matched offensively and defensively on the field.

Cox said the boys had plays “here and there, and it got away from us.”

Ethan Cox led Opp and went 2-for-3 with two singles.

Laurinburg’s Parker Byrd went 3-for-3, and Nick Cook went 2-for-3.