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Hickory Post 48 pitchers MacLindsay Mitchell and Greg Lucas combined for 15 strikeouts in a 10-4 victory against Henderson County Post 77 on Wednesday night.
The win by Hickory (9-5, 5-4) avenges an 8-5 eight-inning lost to Post 77 earlier this season and also snaps a two-game skid in Area IV West Division play
Post 48 dropped contests Friday and Saturday to Caldwell (10-7) and Burke counties (12-2).
"We weren't playing real well the last couple of games," said Post 48 head coach Fore Rembert. "The times when we pitched well, we played bad defense. If we played good defense, we pitched bad or weren't hitting anything. I just told the guys we are going to play through it, stay positive and not worry about why it is happening. We just need to keep our heads up and keep fighting. Nobody is going to quit. It's not one of those situations. We just had a bad couple of games."
Mitchell only tossed three innings because of a high pitch count, but struck out eight batters during that time, including five in a span of six batters.
"I thought MacLindsay took the ball really well," Rembert said. "There were a couple of hitters there where he fell behind. He tried to battle back. We made a couple of errors behind him, which didn't help anything. His pitch count started getting a little high for the number of innings he was throwing. We try to be conscious of that, especially as young as he is. We let him go as long as we think he can go where he has got some success, and then go ahead and pull him. He's still building. He's definitely one of our guys. He threw really well."
Henderson County (4-11, 3-6) took a 3-2 lead early in Wednesday's ball game with a pair of RBIs by starting pitcher Carson Smith.
Thomas Waddell, who scored on both of Smith's early hits, recorded an RBI double in the bottom of the third inning to make it 4-2 in favor of Post 77.
Lucas took over on the mound in the fourth inning and finished out the game.
"I thought Greg came in and competed really hard. He is really starting to take that pitching role really serious. He wants to win. He is adamant about going out there and doing his job. I think we saw that tonight. We're real pleased with him and want him to keep competing hard."
Post 48 started its rally in the sixth inning when an RBI double by Colton Chapman tied the contest. Chapman later scored in the inning on an attempted double steal.
A three-run seventh inning put Hickory into the driver's seat in the contest for good.
Three run-scoring hits took place in the inning, including an RBI double by Kyle Kelly and RBI singles from Ky'rawn Whitfield and Luke Barton.
Hickory added a pair of insurance runs in the ninth inning when Davis Hanvey connected on a two-RBI triple, plating both Kelly and Whitfield.
Hanvey led Hickory with three RBIs. Chapman and Luke Barton each added two RBIs, while Whitfield and Kelly each drove in one run.
Lucas picked up the victory on the mound, allowing four hits, one earned run, two walks and striking out seven Henderson County batters.
Pitching in relief, Post 77 pitcher Waddell took the loss giving up seven hits and six earned runs.
Post 48 is off Thursday before taking the field against rival Cherryville on Friday at Henkel-Alley Field.
First pitch for that game is set for 7 p.m.
Rembert said Wednesday's win couldn't have come at a better time.
"We needed some good momentum going into the Cherryville game," he said. "They are a very good team. We're looking forward to competing against them Friday night."View more articles in: