Three days after coming off a dominating 26-1 win over the Dollarway Cardinals to kick off conference play, the Hornets looked to continue that momentum on Friday night. The Hornet hosted a highly efficient opponent at home against the Drew Central Pirates, who had the star pitching to give the deep batting team of the Hornets problems. The Hornets and the Pirates battled through all seven innings on a great pitching performance from both sides, but it was the Hornets that showed their determination and focus down the stretch to win 4-1.
Senior Braden Brown was the starting pitcher for the Hornets as he kept a talented Pirates team on their toes throughout the entire game. At the bottom of the first inning, senior catcher Lane Davis was able to account for a big single base hit as the first batter. Two batters later, senior infielder Hayden Bussell was able to account for a base hit to get senior Timothy Holeman, who ran for Davis, home for the first run of the game. Brown was able to account for two strikeouts and hold Drew Central to only one batter accounting for a hit at the top of the second inning. Junior Pirates pitcher Drew Burton had a solid performance for the rest of the game from the bottom of the second to the fifth inning. Burton allowed two Hornets batters to get on base through walks, but the fielding team of the Pirates secured all three outs before Harmony Grove could get another scoring session in.
The Pirates were able to tie the game at the top of the third inning as senior Nate Cooper was able to get one of his teammates home by accounting for a big hit. The Hornets had several chances to get players on base but were falling victim to the efficient pitching of Burton through the bottom of the third and fourth inning.
Harmony Grove had their biggest chance to make a statement at the bottom of the fifth inning with Burton pitching as Brown, junior shortstop Caleb Johnson and senior outfielder Gabe Johnson were able to find ways to get on base. Despite having the bases loaded, the batter for the Hornets was struck out by Burton, leaving a hopeful scoring situation empty.
At the top of the sixth inning, Brown was able to help get the first two batters of Drew Central out and finally delivered a strikeout in his last inning of the game. At the bottom of the sixth inning, Burton had to be switched out as he had thrown too many pitches. The Hornets took advantage of the lack of efficiency from the new Pirates' pitcher as three of the first four batters were able to create big hits. Junior Jeremy Launius was able to get on base with a single-base hit. Two batters later, Davis was able to account for a big double-base hit to get senior Landon Garrett, who ran for Launius, home to break the tie. Caleb Johnson was able to deliver a double-base hit to get Holeman home for his second run of the game. Johnson was able to get home through a Pirates fielding error to get the Hornets up 4-1.
Junior Mason Morgan was able to get the first three batters of Drew Central out, including the last being a strikeout at the top of the sixth inning to secure the win. Brown allowed only five hits, three walks and one run while delivering six strikeouts in the first six innings. As a batter, he also accounted for two hits, including a double-bast hit and a steal. Lane Davis accounted for two hits, including a double-base hit and two RBIs. Timothy Holeman accounted for two runs as the runner for Davis. The Hornets played two games the following day as they lost both games in a back-to-back. The Hornets lost to the Woodlawn Bears 8-4 and the Rose Bud Ramblers 3-1. They will look to regain their momentum on Tuesday, March 14, as they host the Prescott Curly Wolves (2-2) in a non-conference game.