Melton’s hit sends Trojans to CVAC semis

In a back-and-forth game between Bandys and Maiden on the baseball diamond, Daniel Melton had the final say.

The senior hit a shallow drive to left-center field to give the Trojans a clutch victory in the opening round of the CVAC baseball tournament Thursday.

Melton, who had three hits in the game, said the Trojans are used to these kinds of games.

“Our season has been like this all year,” Melton said. “It’s only taken one hit to blow a lot of games open. We just fought and got hot at the end.”

Thursday’s game included four ties and five lead changes.

“We were fortunate to win tonight,” said Bandys coach Frank Porter. “Maiden probably deserved to win. We left way too many people on base. Baseball games are like that, though. You take your wins when you can get them.”

The Trojans had to erase a 5-3 deficit after Maiden scored three runs in
the bottom of the fourth inning.

A sacrifice fly by Alex Lomax tied the game at 3-3. Luke Setzer scored Kyle Kelly on a single for the second run of the inning.

A passed ball made it a 5-3 Maiden lead at the end of the fourth.

Bandys fought back and tied the game. Two runs scored for the Trojans in the top of the sixth on two passed balls and a wild pitch.

With momentum on their side, Bandys was able to get the bases loaded with Melton at the plate.

The senior took the third pitch he saw and carried it to outfield for a hit, as his teammates celebrated with him on the field.

“We’ve just had so much momentum lately,” Melton said. “We just put the ball in play and good things happened.”

Porter was pleased with his team’s effort.

“I’ m proud of the kids for staying in the game,” Porter said. “We hung around, made some things happen on a passed ball and just got lucky in the end. My No. 3 guy came through with a base hit.”

The Blue Devils travel to Hickory to L.P. Frans Stadium, where they meet seventh-seeded East Burke.

“The players are looking forward to it,” Porter said. “They have been talking about it already. It may have been one of the reasons we overlooked this game a little bit. I’m happy our conference and L.P. Frans allows us to do this. We have to come out and take advantage of situations.”

Melton said his team should approach the new atmosphere just like any other game.

“It just like an away game,” Melton said. “We have to come in with the same state of mind and come out ready to play.”