Blue Devils earn first win

Published 8:06 pm Thursday, March 29, 2012

Escambia County Blue Devils pitcher Matthew Quimby throws a pitch in a recent game. The Blue Devils earned their first win of the season in a trip to B.C. Rain on Tuesday.

Bats were hot for the Escambia County Blue Devils Tuesday at Trimmier Park in Mobile as they earned their first win of the season beating B.C. Rain.

The Blue Devils (1-15, 1-6) recorded a season-high 11 hits, dominating the Raiders’ pitching for a majority of the contest.

Imani Gray (2-for-5, RBI, R) and Tyler Sanspree (2-for-5, R, RBI) were the leaders at the plate, with both players ripping hits in key moments to help push their team to victory.

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“Imani and Tyler each had two hits for us,” said Andy Lambert, ECHS head baseball coach. “We had several players get hits in the game, but those two guys really came through in clutch situations to help us earn our first victory.”

D’Andrez McCarthy (1-for-3, 2R) scored the Blue Devils’ first run of the game in the bottom of the third inning, as he crossed the plate on a fielder’s choice by Malcolm Black (1-for-5, RBI).

The run pulled the Blue Devils within three runs of the Raiders, who had jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the top of the first inning.

Gray got things going for the Blue Devils in the bottom of the fourth recording an RBI-single that knocked in Anthony Morris (1-for-3, R) and helped cut the Raiders’ lead to two runs. Morris’ run was followed up with Gray and Sanspree crossing the plate to tie the game at 4.

Positive attitudes after the Raiders took the lead on some critical mistakes helped keep ECHS in the game, Lambert said.

“We went down early in the first inning due to errors, but the kids never got down, which was an important key to winning this game,” he said.

Escambia County erased the deficit in the bottom of the fourth with Morris

The complexion of the game changed in the fifth with McCarthy scoring his second run of the game being knocked in by Winston Barron’s (1-for-5) RBI-single to give ECHS a 5-4 lead.

Escambia County put the game away in the final three innings shutting down the Raiders at the plate, while picking up three more runs courtesy of Matthew Quimby (1-for-4, 2R) and Morris to earn the 8-4 win.

With a win on the board, the focus for the Blue Devils now moves to getting on a winning path.

Consistency at the plate must be maintained for ECHS to find any more wins, Lambert said.

“We need to continue to hit the ball well,” he said. “We had 11 hits Tuesday night, so keeping up that production will be what determines if we keep picking up wins. We haven’t been seeing the type of pitching that we see against stronger opponents, but if we can continue growing in that area, we should get some more wins.”

The Blue Devils’ next game will be Tuesday, with two matchups on the schedule. They will play Cottage Hill at 3 p.m. and then take on Excel at         7 p.m.