KEYSTONE HEIGHTS – A three run double in the seventh inning by Luke Padgett spelled a fourth straight win for the Middleburg High Broncos baseball team that beat Keystone Heights 10-7 on Mon., March 18 at Keystone Heights High School.
Middleburg entered the spring break with just one loss; a 12-1 drubbing by Fleming Island on March 8 before rattling off wins of 3-0 over Ed White, then 8-7 and 6-5 over district 3-7A rival Ocala Vanguard before heading to Keystone Heights.
Against Keystone Heights, in a game that saw 17 hits between the two teams, it was Middleburg throwing with three pitchers; starter Camron Faucett, Hunter Conaway and Jarod Hutchingson with Faucett putting the Broncos behind with five runs in the first three innings. Hutchingson got the win with two innings of work. Faucett finished with five strikeouts. Andrew Cox, who also hit two doubles, took the loss for the Indians on the mound in relief for the final runs.
In the second inning, Middleburg got a solo homer from Samuel Rawlins with Christian Powell, Colby Anderson and Joe Justino all tagging Keystone Heights starter Tripp Davis for multiple hits, Anderson with two doubles.
In the fateful seventh inning, Clayton Simmons reached one a walk, Anderson doubled and Rawlins walked to load the bases. Padgett bashed his double to centerfield to score three runs to put the Broncos up 8-7. Powell singled to score Padgett and Justino singled to score the final run.
In the two district games against Vanguard, 6-5 and 8-7, the Broncos broke a 5-4 lead to put the second game in extra innings behind a walk to Faucett and a passed ball to tie the game before Padgett walked in the top of the eighth, got to second on a sacrifice bunt from Collin Henderson before a pass ball to Luke Padgett scored the winner.
Hunter Conaway got the win on the mound with four strikeouts in relief of starter Clayton Simmons who had two strikouts and gave up a homer to give up five runs.
In the first game at Ocala Vanguard, Middleburg got up 7-1 by the fourth inning behind an RBI from Rawlins and a sacrifice fly from Anderson (2-0) in the first inning, then two singles; Padgett and Justino (3-1), Henderson hit by a pitcher with bases loaded (4-1) and a groundball error that scored three runs (7-1) all in the fourth inning.
Vanguard got four runs back in the fifth with three singles and two batters hit by Rawlins at pitcher.
The Broncos got their eighth run off a walk and error that scored Padgett (8-5) but Vanguard kept competing with a double off Conaway scoring one in the sixth (8-6) and a homer in the seventh off Hutchingson (8-7).
Rawlins got the win with seven strikeouts on the night with Hutchingson getting a save.
Against Ed White, 10 strikeouts from three pitchers; Faucett with the win with four strikeouts, and 11 hits fueled the 3-0 district win.
Middleburg High’s baseball opened with wins of 6-1 over Bradford County and 8-1 over University Christian to go 2-0 for the 2019 season.
Against Bradford, the Broncos scored three runs in the fourth and fifth innings for the win. Logan Padgett went 1-3 for two runs batted in. Collin Henderson also went 1-3 with two RBIs. Clayton Simmons got the win on the mound with four innings pitched with four strikeouts.
Against University Christian, the Broncos got five runs in the sixth inning after building a 2-0 lead with runs in the third and fourth. Clayton Simmons hit a homer for the Broncos with Simmons, Camron Faucett and Joe Justino all hitting doubles.
Thurs., March 28 at Gainesville 7pm
Mon., April 1 at Clay 7pm
Tues., April 2 vs. Cook (GA) (6:30pm)
Mon., April 8 vs. OPHS 6:30pm
Thurs., April 11 vs. Columbia 630pm
Fri., April 12 at Columbia 7pm