Leader Blues

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

SPORTS>> Falcons are on a roll

Leader sports editor

NP routes Jacksonville and Hall in consecutive

North Pulaski baseball is on a two-game winning streak. The Falcons dominated their last two opponents, beating crosstown rival Jacksonville 7-1 Friday, then disposing of Little Rock Hall 12-2 Monday afternoon in five innings.

The win over the Warriors was highlighted by a play everyone was excited about, but no one as much as NP senior Steven Hinton. Hinton blasted a 2-2 pitch over the fence in left field and nearly over the batting cages behind the fence in the fourth inning. It was the big senior’s first career home run.

The round-tripper came the first pitch after Hall’s infield visited the mound to talk with the Warrior coach. NP head coach Robbie Walker, assistant Travis Lyda and Hinton also huddled, and Walker said Hinton was simply following his instructions.

“The sad thing is Lyda told him to do that right before he did it,” Walker said.

“I told him I wanted to see him hit one,” Lyda added.

“It was actually Hinton’s second base hit of the game. He was one of three Falcons to get multiple hits in the win, joining fellow seniors Mitchell Regnas and Brandon Clements, who all went 2 for 3.

North Pulaski took the lead in the bottom of the first inning with a single run in the first inning, and took command of the game in the third with a six-run explosion.

Senior pitcher Jeremy Mogish kept Hall of balance until a hit and an error allowed one run to score for Hall in the top of the fourth.
The Falcons kept hitting the ball hard in the bottom of the fourth, and Hall muffled two relay throws that should have been double play balls to keep the rally going.

Hinton then stepped to the plate with Brandon Clements on third base. A wild pitch allowed Clements to score easily, bringing the Hall coach and infield to the mound. That’s when Hinton unleashed the power and put NP up by the run-rule margin.

Hall added a run in the top of the fifth and put a runner on third with one out, but could bring it in to keep the game going.

Mogish gave up just three hits and one earned run in the game.

On Friday, the Falcons beat the Red Devils in the first meeting between the two teams in two seasons.

North Pulaski out-hit Jacksonville 11-4 and all but one Falcon got a base hit in the game. Mogish went 2 for 4 with a triple, Junior catcher Tyler Uptergrove went 2 for 3 with a double and Regnas went 2 for 2 with three runs scored and three stolen bases.

Clements went 1 for 3, but had a sacrifice fly and two RBIs in the game. Zach James, Scott Bolen, Shane Graham and Josh Mansfield all got base hits as well.

Graham got the win on the mound and the Falcons improved to 15-7 on the season.

They play a conference doubleheader against Stuttgart Thursday, which will also be senior night at Dupree. The games mean little to North Pulaski, who will finish in fourth place regardless of the outcome.

A sweep by either team or a split will make no difference regarding where the Falcons seed into the state playoffs.