The Hornets’ undefeated season remains intact as the varsity baseball boys from Orange swept the non-conference season series with Madison County High School with a 5-2 victory last Friday evening.
“I didn’t think we hit the ball as well as we should have tonight but we didn’t give up and that’s what carried us,” Orange Head Coach Dave Rabe said. “Madison’s pitching did a good job of mixing things up so we couldn’t square it up very well but, at the end of the day, you take the “W” and move on to the next one.”
Registering eight hits while yielding just three, Orange took the early lead at 1-0 in the home-half of the first inning. Kennan Williams, batting second in the order, was issued a base-on-balls before Bradley Hanner stroked a single to left-center field, moving up his teammate. Another pair of walks from Madison pitcher Zachary Adams eventually led to Orange’s opening tally.
Quickly countering in the second stanza, Madison’s Isaiah Breckenridge reached first base before moving to second on a wild pitch. An RBI single to left field from Kobi Alexander plated Breckenridge to knot the score at 1-1.
Regaining the led in the third inning, Orange senior Joel Wright reached on an error only to be driven across home plate by fellow classmate Christian Amos with his double to left field, moving his squad in front by a 2-1 margin.
Launching a monstrous triple to the outer reaches of center field as the leadoff batter in the fourth, Trevon Smith would tack on another run for the Hornets on Hanner’s infield sacrifice for a 3-1 lead.
“(Christian) Amos has been a happy surprise early this season,” Rabe said. “He’s really squaring the ball up well. A lot of our guys are seeing the ball well, along with Amos, Bradley Hanner but we’ve had a lot of our guys seeing it well. Glenville State is getting a real good athlete in Trevon (Smith). It’s nice to have that power in the leadoff spot and even when he doesn’t square it up exactly, Trevon can use the power in his legs to get down the line. He’s doing a good job of getting on base for us.”
Singling to center field in the fifth inning, senior Kaleb Marshall came home to score on Smith’s RBI to left, pushing the Orange advantage to 4-1. Driving in Smith for his second RBI of the evening, Hanner gave the Hornets their fifth and final run with a hot single to left field.
A pair of walks issued in the visitors’ sixth, followed by a single from Adams, brought Madison a run closer as Eli Estes scored, making it a 5-2 contest.
Providing a bit of uncertainty for the Orange faithful, the Mountaineers loaded the bases in the top of the seventh with only one out. Relieving teammate Marshall, senior closer Caleb Ferraro struck out Breckenridge looking while getting Alexander to pop-out, ending the threat and securing the victory for the Hornets
“It’s nice to be in the situation of being undefeated, but at the same time you can’t become complacent and you still have to go after it every day no matter what happens,” Rabe added.
For the game, Smith was 3 for 4 with a pair of runs and an RBI while Hanner collected a pair of hits and two RBI. Amos was 2 for 4 with an RBI and Marshall scored a run and gathered a hit as Wright also had a hit and an RBI.
Facing Spotsylvania early last week, the Hornets got a strong outing on the mound from Hanner who held the Knights to two hits, striking out 13 in a 5-2 Orange win.
Amos hit two doubles and drove in three to lead the Orange offense.
In a slugfest Monday, Orange took the lead with an eight-run third inning and held on for a 15-13 win over Massaponax.
Orange scored two in the first, but the Panthers plated five and added another in the second to take a 6-2 lead.
Orange came back to take a 10-6 lead in the top half of the third before the Panthers scored three in the bottom of the inning to make it 10-9. A five-run fifth gave Orange all the runs it would need, though Massaponax scored four more over the final two innings to narrow the margin.
Hanner had three hits (including two doubles), two runs batted in and four runs scored. Smith, Justin Beaty, Joel Wright and John Dawson all had two hits and two runs scored, with Beaty, Wright and Dawson each driving in two runs apiece as well.
The Hornets will host Spotsylvania Friday, Powhatan next Tuesday and rival Louisa next Thursday at Porterfield Park in Orange.