A misplayed pop fly ball in the infield enabled Harrisburg Hickory Ridge to remain alive in the state baseball playoffs Saturday evening.
Hickory Ridge beat host Northwest Guilford 5-3 in the second round of 4A action and moves on to a third-round matchup at second-seeded East Forsyth.
The score was tied 3-3 in the top of the seventh, when Jeremiah Boyd doubled and then R.J. Coard reached on a bunt single. Coard advanced to second on a sacrifice, setting up the winning play.
With two out, the Northwest Guilford infield failed to catch the pop fly. Boyd and Coard raced home with the decisive runs.
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Saturday’s top performers
Ryan Middlemiss (Charlotte Country Day): Middlemiss pitched five shutout innings and earned the victory as the Buccaneers rallied for a 2-1 victory in nine innings over Arden Christ School in the 3A private school quarterfinals.
Ryan Rustino (Lincoln Charter): Rustino tossed a six-hitter and struck out 10 as Lincoln Charter downed North Moore 8-1 in a second-round N.C. 1A game.
Jamie Tamburrino (McBee): His three-run homer lifted McBee to a 7-5 victory over Hannah-Pamplico in Game 1 of the S.C. 1A state finals.
Saturday’s other results
N.C. 4A PLAYOFFS
Pfafftown Reagan 7, Hough 3: Reagan scored three runs in the top of the sixth, breaking open what had been a 4-3 lead. Hough then left the bases loaded in the top of the seventh. The Huskies left seven runners stranded in the game. Tyler Johnson and Avery Chunn each had two hits for Hough.
N.C. 3A PLAYOFFS
Alexander Central 4, North Gaston 1: The Cougars scored three runs in the bottom of the second for a 3-1 lead and never trailed again. Bryson Hammer had two hits and two RBI, and starting pitcher Dawson Elder went 6.2 innings, allowing only three hits.
Asheville Reynolds 4, Lawndale Burns 2
Boiling Springs Crest 6, Northwest Cabarrus 0: Nick Melton pitched a shutout for the top-seeded Chargers, and Riley Cheek smacked a two-run home run.
Skyland Roberson 15, Concord Jay M. Robinson 10: The Bulldogs led 8-7 after five innings, but Roberson scored four in the top of the sixth and four more in the seventh inning.
Southwest Guilford 4, East Rowan 2: The Mustangs left the bases loaded in the top of the seventh in this second-round loss.
3A PRIVATE SCHOOLS
Charlotte Christian 9, Forsyth Country Day 8: The top-seeded Knights got a scare in this game. They led 9-0 early, only to see the visitors rally. The Knights will face conference foe Providence Day in the semifinals, set for Tuesday.
Charlotte Country Day 2, Arden Christ School 1 (9 innings): The Buccaneers advanced to the semifinals, rallying after Christ School took a 1-0 lead into the bottom of the seventh. Ryan Middlemiss got the victory in relief, and Cameron Greene and John Hosmer each had two hits.
Providence Day 11, High Point Christian 6: The Chargers scored seven runs in the fourth inning and smacked 13 hits. John Miralia and Bryce Daniel each had two hits and two RBI.
N.C. 2A PLAYOFFS
East Bend Forbush 5, Belmont South Point 0
Ledford 7, West Stanly 1: Ledford shocked the Colts with a seven-run top of the seventh inning, spoiling a strong performance by West Stanly starter Zach Grice.
Mount Pleasant 10, West Wilkes 3: The Tigers upset higher-seeded West Wilkes, scoring six times in the top of the third. They added a pair of home runs in the sixth.
R-S Central 4, Anson County 1: Jace Crowe pitched a complete-game victory for the Hilltoppers.
2A PRIVATE SCHOOLS
Rocky Mount Faith Christian 4, Rock Hill Westminster Catawba 0
N.C. 1A PLAYOFFS
Asheboro Uwharrie Charter 4, Queens Grant 2: Jonathan Weaver of Uwharrie Charter limited Queens Grant to six hits.
Cherryville 3, Chatham Central 1
Lincoln Charter 8, North Moore 1: Ryan Rustino fired a six-hitter, striking out 10.
Mooresville Pine Lake Prep 6, Mountain Island Charter 1: Winning pitcher Chase Williams threw a four-hitter and struck out 10. Michael Fea had two hits for the Pride, which scored five times in the bottom of the second.
1A PRIVATE SCHOOLS
Statesville Christian 7, Lasker Northeast Academy 0: The Lions advanced to Tuesday’s semifinals and a game at top-seeded Wayne Country Day.
S.C. 1A STATE FINALS
McBee 7, Hannah-Pamplico 5: Jamie Tamburrino slammed a three-run home run in the sixth inning for the go-ahead runs, and McBee won Game 1 of the best-of-three state finals. McBee will be home at 6 p.m. Tuesday in Game 2.
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