The Hillwood High School boys varsity baseball team got their season started in exciting fashion, beating rival Cane Ridge 5-4 thanks to a suicide squeeze in the bottom of the seventh.
Terry Swift layed down a perfect bunt and pinch-runner Antonio Walton flew home with the winning run.
“Swift is a good bunter and we knew he could get it down and they would have a hard time throwing Walton out,” said Hillwood manager Randy Harrell.
The squeeze capped a two run comeback for the Hilltoppers in the seventh and got their season off to a great start.
“Cane Ridge pretty much returned their whole team this year,” Harrell said. “And they finished third in the District last year so we knew they are going to be a strong quality team,” Harrell added.
Pitcher Rolly Hunt had a strong game for the Hilltoppers, going six innings, scattering six hits and allowing no earned runs. Hillwood committed seven errors, however.
Swift pitched the seventh and was credited with the win.
In the rematch, Cane Ridge would jump out to an early lead with three runs in the first inning and hold on to win 6-2.
Swift and Patrick Coyle each drove in a run for the Hilltoppers. Coyle suffered the loss on the mound for Hillwood.
In their third game, Hillwood ran into a buzz-saw against Goodpasture Christian.
Goodpasture scored eight runs in the second and seven more in the fourth on their way to a 17-0 win.
“We’re building a team from the ground up,” Coach Harrell said.
“Our pitching should keep us in most games and we have some things to do, but when we put it all together we’ll be fine. We’re not taking anything for granted,” he said.
Hillwood Wins Opener in Walk-Off