By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Host team falls to Virginia in extra innings
Placeholder Image

Newton County exited the 2008 Dixie Boys World Series on Sunday after an extra-innings loss to Virginia.

After loosing their first game to team Georgia late Saturday, the team looked to get back on the winning track.

The starting pitcher for Newton County was Terrell Gaither, who pitched an outstanding game.

Gaither allowed only two hits while recording five strikeouts in five and two thirds innings of work.

In the first inning, after Gaither allowed lead off batter Ryan Puryear to reach on a base on balls, clean up batter Joe Martin delivered the first base hit of the game.

A line drive fastball to left field sent Puryear rounding third in pursuit of the games first run.

Only to be out done by Newton County's left fielder Matt Hitchcock, who snagged the line drive off the first bounce and threw a strike to catcher Ryan McCranie for the outfield assist.

Continuing to pitch well, Gaither only allowed one more hit, while his defense only allowed one runner to advance past second.

Holding off the Virginia offense during his tenure on the mound, Gaither could only hope for some offensive production from his teammates.

As the stalemate continued, the first offensive action came in the fifth inning. Newton County delivered the first punch.

After McCranie delivered the free pass to first from Puryear, he was advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt off the bat of Hitchcock.

Moving on to third after a wild-pitch, McCranie then took home after another wild pitch, giving his team the 1-0 lead off his aggressive running; however, the Newton All Stars were unable to hang on for long.

After a late sixth inning pitching change by manager Jesse Johnston, relief pitcher Austin Fuller gave up a game-tying home run to William Worley.

Again in the seventh inning Fuller found himself in trouble after he gave up back to back singles to Puryear and L.O. Barnet.

Bringing in the go-ahead run was Tyler Long, who belted a double that scored Puryear to give Virginia a 2-1 lead.

Newton was able to get the run right back in the bottom of the seventh. Joey Mitchel plated the tying run after Bowen Braswell hit an infield RBI single.

Failing to score another run after having the bases loaded, team Newton County hoped to settle for winning in extra innings.

Looking to redeem himself on the mound in the eighth inning, Fuller's shaky control gave way to another Virginia home run.

Joe Martin blasted a low fastball into City Pond waters to give his team the 3-2 advantage.

"I was told by my teammate, Worley, to look for something low," Martin said. "He threw a fastball down there and I got it. It hit the sweet spot, and I knew it was gone."

Newton County was unable to answer in the bottom of the eighth, and Virginia went on to fight another day in the tournament.

"They play hard," Johnston said. "After the game, I asked if everyone gave it 110 percent, and they said they did. You can't ask for anything more than that. I really liked the fight they gave."