Sanford Spinners win division
The Sanford Spinners needed one more win to clinch a division title Thursday in a regular season-ending doubleheader at crosstown rival Southern Lee.
Southern Lee made the Spinners work until an extra inning in game two to earn the victory.
Leadoff hitter Spencer Faulk reached base on an error, then wound up stealing third and scoring on a wild pitch to give the Spinners (13-2) a 1-0 six-inning victory in the second game Thursday evening.
Southern Lee pulled out a tight, low-scoring opening game. The Cavs scored all their runs in the third inning of the five-inning game and won 3-1.
Sanford, again with Faulk's speed being the key, plated a run before recording an out. Faulk doubled, hustling around the paths on a looper into right-center field, followed by Braxton Toro's shot down the third base line for an RBI double.
Southern Lee pitcher Ben Gaster kept Toro stranded on third and got out of the inning. He gave up two hits, two singles, for the only Spinner runners in the last four innings.
Southern Lee rallied in the third starting with its top of the order. Marcos Collazo singled and stole second. Next up, Alex Bullard singled into center scoring Collazo. Bullard took second on a wild throw to the plate.
The Spinners, with Jake Thomas pitching, got two grounders to get within an out of leaving a 1-1 score through three.
Instead, Thomas hit Gaster with a pitch. Noah Terhune hit a high chop toward third base for an infield hit and the go-ahead RBI. Jonathan Husk followed with a single into center scoring another run before the Spinners threw out Terhune at the plate.
The pitching was even sharper in the second game. The Spinners managed two hits off of Southern Lee's Josh Taylor; with one coming in the sixth. Austin Bullock had a no-hitter going until two outs in the Cavalier fifth and finished with a one-hit shutout and six strikeouts.
Even without a hit, the Cavaliers had a shot to gain a lead in the first inning. Bullock gave up one-out walks to Bullard and Maxx Taylor. Bullock escaped the jam thanks to a double play, shortstop Tyler Toro to Dylan Cox at second relaying to Jake Thomas.
The Spinner sixth started with Faulk grounding to second and reaching on an error. Braxton Toro hit a shot toward left field. Maxx Taylor, at third, made a diving stop, got to his knees but made a high throw to second leaving both Spinners safe.
Bullard came on in relief for Josh Taylor and struck out the first two batters he faced.
Bullard plunked Tyler Thomas loading the bases. With Cox at the plate, Bullard fired a wild pitch and Faulk sprinted down the line.
The Spinners kept the 1-0 lead safe in the home half of the inning. Bullock got two strikeouts around a fly to Faulk in center.
Sanford wins the South Central division title in the CCSSL. The eight division champs in the league qualify for the CCSSL Tournament which will be hosted at Lee County High School Wednesday and Thursday. It's a single-elimination tourney with quarterfinal games Wednesday starting at 2 p.m. and the semifinals and final on Thursday starting at 3 p.m. The CCSSL showcase games are set for July 29 at 5 and 7 p.m. at Duke University.