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Blue Ridge season ends in a squeaker

By Alex Love, Staff Reporter
Published on Friday, May 6, 2016

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Hugs were the only consolation for the Blue Ridge baseball players after a season-ending loss at Seneca.
 

Alex Love

Hugs were the only consolation for the Blue Ridge baseball players after a season-ending loss at Seneca.

 



Enlarge photo

The scoreboard tells the story of Blue Ridge's final game of the season.
 

Alex Love

The scoreboard tells the story of Blue Ridge's final game of the season.

 

The Blue Ridge baseball season has come to an end.

Seneca beat the Tigers, 3-2, Friday night at Seneca in the District II championship. Seneca went through the tournament unbeaten and will play at Wren Monday at 6:30 in the first round of the Upstate playoffs. Wren beat Chapman Friday night to win District IV.

Seneca’s win was the second over Blue Ridge, beating the Tigers 4-1 last Monday.

Despite the season-ending loss, Blue Ridge Head Coach Travis Henson said he was pleased with the team’s sterling season.

“I told my guys I’m no less proud of them since we got off the bus,” Henson said. “We won 20 games this season, a 17-game win streak and 20-6 on the year. But four of those losses were the difference of one run. Still, to win this region and play with our backs against the wall, I’m just real proud of these players.”

Brandon Southern scored for Blue Ridge in the third inning and Elijah Henderson added the Tigers’ final run in the fourth.

The Bobcats’ Braxton Gambrell scored in the bottom of the second inning and in the fourth to tie the game, 2-2. Elijah Turner scored the winning run in the fifth inning.

Tristen Hudson pitched Seneca’s win and struck out six Tigers. Ethan Few, of Blue Ridge, had four strikeouts.

Andy Bay, Seneca head coach said, “You don’t win 17 in a row by mistake. Blue Ridge is a great baseball team. Henson runs a great program over there and you don’t win 17 straight games in high school unless you’re good.”

Few’s game-ending out, with Zach Waddell on first base with the potential tying run, was a fly ball towards the first base fence that was caught by Seneca’s Cayde Hamilton.

“I just broke on it as soon as I saw it hit, got under it and caught it,” Hamilton said. “It’s probably one of the scariest things because coach Bay jumped right into my arms as soon as I got it.”

“It felt like it hung there forever,” Bay said. “A part of me wanted to go out and catch it myself. Cayde is an example of those kids who stepped up after others were injured. He’s played like a rock all year long.”

Seneca lost four players this year due to injury; Devon Kelly due to football, Jack Casino ACL injury, Landon McLain had Tommy John surgery and Furman Wilson broke his arm.

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