The Stanly News and Press (Albemarle, NC)

Local Sports

May 12, 2014

Yadkin Valley Conference West Baseball Tournament Notebook

Thursday, May 8, 2014 — The first two rounds of the Yadkin Valley Conference West tournament on Monday and Tuesday gave two Stanly rivals a third chance to compete against each other, with the result of that game setting up two more county teams for a fourth matchup this season.

Tuesday’s Game

N. Stanly 7, S. Stanly 6

More than just the opportunity to play in the finals of the YVC West tournament were on the line Tuesday afternoon when the No. 3 seeded Rebel Bulls took on the No. 2 North Stanly Comets.

Whichever team won the game would earn a home game in the first round of the state 1A playoffs against the third seed from the Mountain Valley Conference, while the YVC West’s third seed  will travel to the No. 2 MVC seeded team.

The Comets trailed most of the game but late offense buoyed by two home runs from catcher Zac Almond lifted North to a 7-6 win over South Stanly.

Matt Lambert earned the win on the mound for the Comets (14-9) pitching the final four innings in relief of starter Tyler Burris.

Dylan Starnes took the loss for South Stanly (12-13).

The Bulls jumped out to a two-run lead in the top of the first inning when Vance Deese’s triple scored Sawyer Lee and Luke Burris.

North got on the board in the bottom of the first on Almond’s first home run of the game, a solo shot to left field.

In the top of the third, Burris and Ryan Coley both had doubles as South started the inning with five straight hits, scoring two runs and building a 4-1 advantage.

Almond came up to bat in the bottom of the third with one out and Will Moore on base. He sent the first pitch of the at-bat over the left-field fence for a two-run home run, pulling the Comets to within a run again 4-3.

South extended to a 6-3 lead in the top of the fifth with two more runs, but the Comets rallied to tie the game in the bottom of the frame. Moore singled and Almond walked to start the inning. With one out, Tyler Burris singled to bring home a run, then a throwing error scored two more runs to tie the game 6-6.

North took the lead in the seventh on Moore’s RBI double to left field that hit up against the fence, scoring Aaron Walters to put the Comets up 7-6.

South threatened in the top of the seventh when Coley and Eli Blake led off the inning with singles. Lambert got a groundout and two strikeouts to end the game.

“They never quit,” North head coach Will Davis said.

“We capitalized on little mistakes but we also have to fix our little mistakes. Defensively, we struggled, but our offense picked up in the end to help our pitching out.”

The win sets up a fourth game this season between Albemarle and North Stanly (see related story, 1B), this time in the finals of the YVC West tournament. The game is scheduled for tonight at 7 at South Stanly.

The Rebel Bulls will be back in action on Wednesday on the road in the opening round of the state playoffs.

SS    202    020    0    6    11    1

NS    102    031    x    7    10    3

WP – Matt Lambert

LP – Dylan Starnes

Hitters: SS – Luke Burris 1-4, 2B; Vance Deese 2-4, 3B, 2 RBI; Alex Poplin 1-4; Ryan Coley 2-4, 2B; Eli Blake 3-4; Malik Lomax 1-3; Maxton Horton 1-3. NS – Noah Crisco 1-4; Will Moore 3-4, 2B, RBI; Zac Almond 2-2, 2 HR, 3 RBI; Matt Lambert 1-4; Tyler Burris 2-4, 2B; Aaron Walters 1-3.

Monday’s Game

South Stanly 7, Gray Stone 0

In the opening round of the YVC West conference tournament, the Bulls got a solid pitching performance from the team’s starter in earning a 7-0 win over No. 6 seed Gray Stone.

Easton Horton threw a seven-game no-hitter for the Bulls, improving his pitching record on the season to 4-4 and reducing his season earned run average to 2.74.

Four different players for South Stanly had multi-hit games, including three RBIs from Alex Poplin and two from Sawyer Lee.

GS    000    000    0    0    0    0

SS    004    030    x    7    9    0

WP – Easton Horton (7 IP, 0 R, 0 hits, 6 BB, 7 K)

Hitters: SS – Sawyer Lee 2-3, 2B, 2 RBI; Alex Poplin 2-3, 2B, 3 RBI; Maxton Horton 2-3, RBI; Ryan Coley 2-3; Vance Deese 1-3, RBI.

To submit story ideas, contact Charles Curcio at (704) 982-2121, ext. 26, or email

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