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Pisgah baseball comes from behind to take down Eagles

Apr. 18—Pisgah baseball is back on track following a 4-3 win over East Henderson on Tuesday.

The Bears were in their first game back in action after spring break. Before spring break, Pisgah had dropped the second leg of the County Clash.

On Monday of last week, Pisgah beat Franklin 3-2 to complete the season sweep of the Panthers.

Then, they took most of the rest of the week off for the break. On Monday, the Bears got back to practice.

"We got a lot of rust out on Monday," Pisgah coach Harold Shepard said. "Today, we had to get up to speed for a minute. That's the big thing."

On the other side of the diamond, East Henderson hit the ground running.

All three of the Eagles' runs came across the plate in the top of the first. While it was a punch in the mouth for the Bears, Pisgah was able to fight back to win the game.

"We still played through it," Shepard said. "That's all that matters. They played hard. They stood behind each other and they took care of each other. They're finding a way."

In the bottom of the first, Pisgah got their first run of the game on the board, as well.

After a quick first out, the Bears got their next two runners on via free passes.

Both runners advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch. Then, a ground ball sent senior Walker Fox barreling to the plate from third base.

As Fox dove in, the ball arrived at the same time. The initial call on the field was an out, much to the chagrin of the Pisgah players, fans and coaches.

After arguments, the ruling was overturned as the catcher had dropped the ball.

"He didn't even see him drop the ball," Shepard said about the ump's initial decision.

The second and third innings ended with some runners stranded on base, but ultimately no runs came across the plate in either frame.

In the fourth, Pisgah got back within one run.

Sophomore Maddox Wright drew a lead-off walk and freshman Zack Wester singled to move Wright over to second.

Sophomore Boone Carver stepped to the plate, singling on a line drive into left field and scoring Wright from second.

The hit was one of two on the day for the sophomore, who went 2/2 with a double, an RBI and a walk.

"Boone was big tonight and he needed to be," Shepard said. "He did a good job and I'm happy for Boone. He's working hard. He's being a leader in practice and he's thinking about what we can do as a team to win. That's all I can ask for. When these seniors are gone, he's going to have to be a leader, and he's taking that to heart."

In the bottom of the fifth, Fox drew a leadoff walk and stole second during the next at-bat. Junior Carson Allison followed that up with a single up the middle, scoring Fox from second and leveling the game.

The run was Fox's second of the game. While he did not grab a hit, he drew two walks and scored twice.

"It doesn't have to be a hit. It's playing baseball," Shepard said. "He's going to have to find ways. At the next level, it's not all going to be hits. It's going to be tough. He's going to have to battle through it and find a way to make things happen for his team. That's what he did tonight."

Senior Eli Rigsby followed that with a single of his own before Wright sent a line drive into left field to score Allison.

The run gave Pisgah the lead and, ultimately, the win. In the next at-bat, Wester popped one up into foul territory near the Pisgah dugout. The ball hit the ground, but the umpire called Wester out after some argument from the East Henderson dugout.

The call was ultimately verbal interference due to a player in the dugout yelling "ball."

"It was the right call," Shepard said.

While there were moments that the Bears were hitting well, they still only had six hits compared to East Henderson's 12.

"We didn't hit particularly well," Shepard said. "We had gotten ready for their lefty, but he didn't play and we got something entirely different. But we're doing what we need to win games and I'm happy with that."

In the bottom of the seventh, senior Eli Ashe came in to close out the game. He put the Eagles batters down in order, including two strikeouts.

"Ashe is Ashe," Shepard said. "I've done him dirty the entire time he's been with me. I've put him in every crappy situation I could possibly put him in so that in situations like this, it doesn't matter. I know he can do it. He's a good young man. He's a great kid. He's giving everything he can give me when he comes out here."

While East did grab 12 hits, they did not get a single free pass — no walks or hit batsmen.

"The kids are dialed in. Both of them. They get it," Shepard said. "They're working and doing the right things. A whole lot of it is on their own. I can't take credit for it."

The Bears will go for the sweep on Friday at East Henderson. Next week, Pisgah gets one game against Madison, as well as two games against North Henderson.

The Knights currently sit one spot ahead of Pisgah in third place in the conference, making the two-game series even more important.