BEULAVILLE — Heavy rain last Thursday and Friday wreaked havoc on the East Central 2A Conference’s plan for baseball.
The Carolina 1A Conference somehow found a way to dodge the raindrops and downpours.
While rescheduling games was the bill for the three county teams, North Duplin’s storm came when it fell apart late in a key game against Princeton last Friday in Calypso.
Princeton scored seven times in the final two innings to beat the Rebels 8-1.
The setback came after ND played a solid game on Tuesday, despite falling 3-0 at Rosewood.
ND (6-5, 6-5) entered last week on a three-game winning streak. It also puts the Rebels in fourth place in the Carolina Conference standings.
Whether that translates into a playoff spot in the 1A classification remains uncertain. ND’s final regular season game, at home against Hobbton, was supposed to be this past Monday. That game was too late for this newspaper’s deadline.
Rosewood (9-2, 9-1), scored two times in the second and once in the fifth as Eric Rosas and Gage Outlaw worked around 10 hits and two walks.
Yet that was only part of the problem.
A bigger concern was that the Eagles’ Will Harris did not allow a hit and struck out 11 during a 76-pitch complete-game effort.
The UNC Pembroke recruit struck out the side in the first, second and seventh innings.
“Will threw a great game and that we only needed three runs shows you we beat a pretty good team,” said Rosewood coach Jason King.
Singles by Gabe Bernon and Brad Wirhouski and a two-run double by Anderson Clukas gave Rosewood a 2-0 edge in the second.
ND’s chance to rebound took wild bounces in the opposite direction late against Princeton (7-4, 6-4).
But it didn’t start out that way, as Rosas drove in Andy Cameron for a 1-0 lead in the second.
Princeton knotted it up in the third.
But the Rebels were unable to crack the spell of Grey Gurganious, who scattered seven hits.
Princeton drilled eight hits off Outlaw in 6.1 innings.
Rosas got the final two outs of the seventh after Landon Kelly yielded a five-pitch walk to score the final Princeton run.
Braxton Morton out-dueled Hayden McGee on Tuesday of last week as Goldsboro trimmed James Kenan 4-0 in Warsaw.
McGee, a Tiger junior right-hander, limited the Cougars to five hits, while whiffing nine and walking one.
A bigger concern was Morton inducing ground balls and fly-outs as the Goldsboro defense responded. Morton had just one strikeout but no walks.
Will Sutton and Tyler Dixon each stroked a hit against the senior Cougar hurler.
The game between the two schools on Friday was rained out and was slated to be played on Monday of this week.
East Duplin is facing a three-game week after its matchups with Wallace-Rose Hill last Thursday and Friday were postponed.
The two schools were to make it up on Wednesday. ED also has a two-game set to play with Goldsboro this week. The contest in Beulaville on Friday at 6:30 p.m. is the season finale.
The Panthers (7-3, 7-2) need all three and a loss by Midway (10-1, 8-1) to grab a share of the ECC title.
The Raiders had games against Spring Creek (3-6) and WRH to play.
ED buried WRH last Tuesday 11-1 in Teachey behind Brady Johnson, Nick Cavenaugh, Logan Brown and Zach Brown.
Johnson drove in three turns and scored twice with a single and being hit by a pitch.
Cavenaugh had a pair of hits and two RBI.
Logan Brown had three hits and drove in a run.
Zack Brown had two hits and an RBI.
Jackson Gause gave up three hits in four innings, while striking out five and walking two.
Dylan Bond finished it with an inning of scoreless baseball.
Landon Likens stroked a pair of hits for the Bulldogs (3-6, 2-7).
ED slammed Xzavier Pearsall for six hits in 3.1 innings and Bryson Lovette for four in 1.2 frames of work.
WRH had seven errors.
Playoffs on horizon
The NCHSAA playoffs start next Tuesday, June 15.
ED and ND are the only Duplin schools with a shot at finding a spot in the 2A and 1A brackets, respectively.
Second-round games are to be played by June 17 and the third round by June 19.
The East Region finals will be played June 22 with the state final series going June 25-26.