Blue Devils pick up 1st win

Published 3:07 pm Monday, March 9, 2015

ECHS coach Michael Parker talks to his team after their game Friday.

ECHS coach Michael Parker talks to his team after their game Friday.

The Escambia County High School Blue Devils picked up their first win of the 2015 season last week, when they defeated visiting Pensacola Christian 14-4 on Tuesday, March 3.

ECHS also lost 11-1 at Northview on Monday, March 2, and fell 4-1 to visiting W.S. Neal on Friday, dropping the Blue Devils’ record to 1-7 for the season.

The Blue Devils will host J.U. Blacksher on Friday at 5:30 p.m. ECHS is scheduled to play at Vigor on Tuesday, March 17, at 4 p.m.

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W.S. Neal 4, ECHS 1

Although the Blue Devils lost to visiting W.S. Neal on Friday, ECHS coach Michael Parker was proud of the team’s effort.

During the county tournament in February, ECHS dropped a 20-2 game to the Eagles. The Blue Devils played much better against the same opponent Friday, allowing just four runs — one of which was unearned.

“We had good pitching today and played strong defense, for the most part,” Parker said. “We had one big error that cost us.”

Parker said one key for the improved performance against W.S. Neal was better control. In the February game, Blue Devils pitchers allowed 14 walks to the Eagles — they allowed no walks Friday.

The Eagles scored one run in the third inning, and one run in the fourth inning, to take a 2-0 lead.

ECHS responded back in the bottom of the fourth inning. Gaetyn Thames led off with a triple and scored on Devon Robinson’s RBI single. Tanner Smith followed with a single of his own, and after a passed ball the Blue Devils had runners on second and third with no outs.

However, the next two batters struck out and the final out was forced on a groundball, ending the rally.

W.S. Neal added two more runs in the sixth inning.

ECHS 14, Pensacola Christian 4

The Blue Devils broke out to a 9-0 lead after three innings against Pensacola Christian last Tuesday, on the way to their first win of the season.

Thames, Robinson, Smith, Rashaan Flavors and Justin Pearson each scored two runs in the win. Scoring one run each were Marquis Brooks, Brandon Cummings, Devante Dailey and Devonte Stephens.

Robinson was 2-for-4 with an RBI, and Flavors was 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Smith also had two RBIs. The Devils finished with eight hits, and allowed three.

“We did a much better job of hitting (against Pensacola Christian),” Parker said. “We were able to get on base, and then we bunted and stole some bases to get into scoring position.”

Smith pitched the first five innings to pick up the win, striking out 10. Cummings worked the final inning, with two strikeouts.

Northview 11, ECHS 1

The Blue Devils broke out to a 1-0 lead against Northview, but it was downhill from there as the undefeated Chiefs defeated ECHS by 10 runs last Monday.

Northview scored five runs in the bottom of the first, and four more in the second to break the game open.

ECHS scored its lone run after Thames led off the first with a double, and moved to third on a wild pitch. He scored on an error.