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Wildcats get mercy-rule win over cross county rivals

Richmond Hill may have played its most complete game so far this early season, much to the chagrin of the visiting Bryan County Redskins, as the Wildcats will now hang on to the county trophy yet another year with a 13-1 five inning win. The home team did it with good hitting, good pitching and good defense.

Alex Tucker took the hill for the second time this season and improved his record to 1-1. The Richmond Hill senior pitched four of the five inning affair giving up just one run, on five hits with five strike outs and no base on balls. Tucker threw more pitches than coach Curry would normally like to see – he went deep in the count against several batters – but he did make quality pitches when they counted most.

Center fielder Tyler Mitchell turned one of those pitches that should have been a base hit in to an out with a diving catch in the first inning. The Wildcats would commit just one error the entire game. Tucker worked his way out of jams in both the second and third inning by getting key strike outs with runners in scoring position. The Redskins scored their only run in the third when Kurt Shuman reached on an infield single and was driven home on Justin Covington’s hard single to right field. Richmond Hill had long since gained all the support Tucker would need.

"We hit the ball well ... a couple of our guys are starting to come around after slow starts. (Nathan) Kilburn is hitting the ball hard and (Jeremey) Goolsby is about where he needs to be," said Coach Curry on his team’s performance at the plate and on a couple of his power hitters in the middle of the lineup. But it was more than the power hitters that were doing the damage against Bryan County.

Covington got the start for the Redskins and would have problems with the Wildcat offense from the beginning. Cody Crow led off with a single and was caught stealing – otherwise the John Johnson and Nathan Kilburn single that followed would have hurt more. Jeremy Goolsby bailed his team out with an RBI single of his own and Raul Rodriguez followed with an RBI sacrifice fly. It was 2-0, but that was just the beginning.

Richmond Hill scored four times in the second inning and seven times in the third aside from a continued barrage of base hits. And the Redskin defense was starting to unravel.

Bryan County’s four errors in that two inning span helped the Wildcats to extend the innings and build a lead that the Wildcats were not going to relinquish. John Johnson continued his hot hitting with a 2-for-3 game and 1 RBI. Kilburn finished 2-for-3 with a double, and Rodriguez went 1-for-1 with 2 RBI’s. Taylor Smith chipped in with a double and an RBI. Richmond Hill finished with 10 hits in the game.

The Wildcats traveled to Brunswick for a bit of a tougher test on Thursday and took an 8-1 loss against the 3S-AAAA Pirates. Raul Rodriguez took the loss for the Wildcats and is now 1-1 on the season.

Both teams will see some increased competition next week. Bryan County will travel to Calvary Day on Tuesday for a 4 p.m. start to their region 3-A schedule, then travel to ECI on Friday for a 6 p.m. game. Richmond Hill will be at Savannah Christian Monday for a 4 p.m. start then home on Thursday against Jenkins for a 4 p.m. start.


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