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Dixie majors battling for survival

If the South Boston Dixie Majors all-star team is going to win the Virginia Dixie Majors State Baseball Tournament, it is going to have to do it the hard way.

Goochland battered South Boston 14-3 in five innings Monday night, forcing South Boston to face Carroll County last night in an elimination game. Last night’s encounter marked the second time that South Boston will have faced Carroll County.

South Boston trailed Carroll County 7-2 at one point when it faced Carroll County Friday night in the opening round of the tournament. But, South Boston rallied and came back to win the game 10-7.

If South Boston managed to win last night, it would face either Amelia or Goochland at 5 p.m. today. Amelia and Goochland, the lone remaining undefeated teams, were slated to face each other in last night’s late game.

Goochland pounded South Boston with a dozen hits that included three home runs, and took advantage of six walks from South Boston hurlers and four South Boston errors.

“We just got beat by a better team,” said South Boston Manager Dale Trent.

“Those guys can hit. It’s that simple.”

While the loss was a tough one to take, Trent remained optimistic that his team can still make a run for the state title and take aim at a berth in the Dixie Majors World Series.

“We can come back and make it into the finals,” Trent pointed out.

“We can still win this thing. We’ll just have to do it the hard way.”

South Boston had only four hits in the game, two of them coming from Scott Rickman. Rickman had a single in the third inning and a solo homer in the fifth inning. Luke Griles had one hit and Fluff Trent had one hit.

South Boston left six runners stranded on the sacks. The tournament host team left the bases loaded in the fourth inning without scoring a run.

Trailing 10-0, South Boston scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the third inning, which started with Aron Puryear and Patches Trent reaching base on back-to-back walks. Puryear later scored when Joe Martin lofted a sacrifice fly to right field.

Rickman reached base, but got caught up in a rundown between first base and second base. He was chased down and tagged out to end the inning, but not before Trent scampered home to cut South Boston’s deficit to eight runs at 10-2.

Goochland answered with four runs in the top of the fifth inning to take a 12-run edge at 14-2. Rickman attempted to ignite a South Boston rally in the bottom of the fifth inning with a solo homer, but that was all that South Boston could muster as the game ended after five innings under the 10-run mercy rule with Goochland on top 14-3.

South Boston struggled from the outset as Goochland took a 3-0 lead in the first inning with the help of a two-run homer by Brandon Perrin. Goochland scored five more runs in the second inning and added two runs in the top of the third inning on a two-run homer by Dylan Wratchford to take a 10-0 lead.

J.T. Poff also had a home run for Goochland, a solo shot in the top of the fifth inning when Goochland scored its final four runs.