Varsity Baseball Heads to Playoffs

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J. Slaughter & J. Berini

Rachel Tilley, Staff Writer

On May 9, the Varsity baseball team traveled to Jacksonville High School in Onslow County for the first round of the North Carolina state playoffs and came away with a big win.

The team had been preparing for this game since their win over Northern Durham on May the 3.

“We have been working hard with Dease,” stated sophomore player Ethan Guentensberger.

“In practice we have been pushing each other and holding each other accountable,” said senior Dalton Brown.

All the boys were looking forward to the first round of playoffs because they knew that if they didn’t give it their all, it would be the seniors last game wearing the Orange jersey.

The game started off with Jaydin Poteat beating out an infield grounder. This allowed him to be safe at first base. Then senior Jason Slaughter moved Poteat to second base, but Slaughter was out at first. Sophomore Cooper Porter hit a double, scoring Poteat. After Porter’s at bat, veteran senior Caige Clayton hit a double to the fence, bringing  Porter home. At the end of the first inning, the Panthers were up 2-0.

“As a team we know how to have productive at bats,” said Brown. “We know how to situational hit and score runs.” The team showed this strength in yesterday’s game which helped them come out with a huge win.

At the start of the second inning, Brown hit a single, followed by another single by Guentensberger. Slaughter came up and hit a single to right field, which scored both of the runners on base. By the end of the second inning, Orange was up 5-0.

Defensively, Joey Berini and Jason Slaughter played a really good game behind Dalton Brown, Kaymin Matkso and Caige Clayton. Kaymin pitched five innings and only gave up two runs, which is the least he has given up all season long. Caige Clayton then substituted in to finished the game.

On Saturday May 12, the Varsity team will take on Conference champions Chapel Hill High at Chapel Hill. The boys played them twice before, ending the series with a 1-1 record. Chapel Hill is ranked first in the conference.  

“We just have to be consistent and play good,” says Brown. “We have the potential to go a long way, we just have to fight.”