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Late Post 8 rally falls short

Opening night didn’t go quite like Halifax County-South Boston Post 8 Junior Legion team manager Jody Nelson had hoped.
But, it could have been worse. Post 8 scored three runs in the final inning, but came up short as Lynchburg Post 16 Blue held on to take a 9-7 win in Monday night’s season opener at Halifax County High School.

“I’m happy with the effort,” noted Nelson.

“You want to win on opening night. You want to start off strong. But, really, the only thing this means is we’re not going undefeated. It’s not saying we’re out of it or anything like that.”

Post 8 entered the bottom of the seventh inning trailing 9-4 after having been blistered by Lynchburg for five runs in the top of the frame. But, it came right back to score three runs in the bottom of the frame to make a game of it.

“They came into the final inning down 9-4 and didn’t give up,” Nelson pointed out.

“That’s what I’m happy about. The effort was there.”

Post 8 gave up a run to Lynchburg in the top of the third inning after the Post 16 leadoff batter reached base on an error. But, Post 8 rallied for three runs in the bottom of the third inning to take a 3-1 lead.

Will Harris laced a double to the outfield with two out and starting pitcher Seth Elliott followed with a walk. Harris and Elliott scored when Tyler Stephens reached base on an error. Michael Watts followed with a hit to score Stephens for the third run.

A Lynchburg run in the fourth inning made it a 3-2 game and two runs in the top of the sixth inning allowed Lynchburg to take a 4-3 lead. The lead didn’t hold up long, though, as Post 8 got a run-scoring hit from Tripp Bennett to deadlock the game at 4-4.

Lynchburg broke the game open with five runs in the top of the seventh inning, the first of which scored when a hard line drive up the middle richocheted off of relief pitcher Shane Bousman. A base hit that followed scored another run and then a double plated two more runs to give Post 16 an 8-4 lead with no outs.

Bousman fanned the next batter, but was then tagged for another hit that scored a run to put Post 16 up 9-4.

Post 8 loaded the sacks in the bottom of the seventh inning and scored a run when Josh Briggs hit into a fielder’s choice. A hit by Dustin Crews scored Elliott from third base to make the score 9-6.

The final Post 8 run scored when Briggs scored on a passed ball.

The Post 8 contingent produced a good offensive effort with nine hits. Harris, Crews and Bennett led the team with two hits each. Stephens, Watts and Justin Womack each had one hit.

Lynchburg Post 16 Blue had 10 hits in the contest and took advantage of three Post 8 errors.

“I think we will be okay,” Nelson said.

“This is a young team. This was their first night of playing together. I think it was a good start. We found out some things from both a coaching and personnel standpoint that will help us.”

South Boston Post 8 had a game scheduled for tonight but that game has been postponed until a later date. Post 8 will be back in action on Monday with a road doubleheader against Big Island Post 217 that will start at 4:30 p.m.