PREP BASEBALL: Cullman knocks off Homewood 9-2

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Cullman’s Easton Dean (2) and Brady Patterson (11) round the bases after Patterson’s grand slam in the second inning. (Nick Griffin/The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – After a weekend trip to Gulf Shores, the Bearcats returned home Tuesday night to host the Homewood Patriots. Cullman got off to a 1-0 start in the bottom of the first but put up five runs in the second to create some separation and pulled away to collect a 9-2 win. Cooper Bowen got the start on the mound and quickly worked through the top of the first inning to get the Bearcats back in the dugout and picking up the bats.

A Max Dueland single gave the ‘Cats a base runner in the bottom half of the first and Brennen Norton doubled into left field to bring him home and make it 1-0. After Nick Braswell and Cooper Bowen were hit by pitches, Easton Dean reached first to load the bases for Brady Patterson. Patterson skied one to right field and it kept carrying and carrying until it eventually landed in the parking lot and emptied the bases for the ‘Cats, giving them a 5-0 lead in the bottom of the second. Ben Hollis doubled into left field to bring Norton around for another score that made it a 6-0 game going into the third inning.

Bowen worked through the top of the third in just nine pitches and Cullman added to its lead in the bottom half of the inning. Bowen helped himself out with a double into left field that brought Matt Brock home for run number seven and Eli Kilpatrick scored on a Patriots error to make it 8-0. A Homewood home run cut the lead to 8-2 in the top of the fourth but the ‘Cats got one of them back in the bottom of the fourth with an RBI double from Braswell.

Cullman went into the fifth inning with a 9-2 lead and Kaleb Heatherly and Dueland combined to keep the Patriots off the board the rest of the way, securing a 9-2 win for the Bearcats.

Patterson (grand slam) led Cullman with four RBIs in the win. Braswell (two hits) drove in a run and Bowen (one hit), Hollis (one hit) and Norton (one hit) collected RBIs as well. Dueland added a pair of hits in the win.

Bowen got the win after tossing three and a third innings, allowing two runs on two hits and striking out a pair of batters. Heatherly pitched two and two thirds innings in the win, striking out one and allowing no runs on no hits and Dueland took the mound for the seventh inning, allowing no runs on no hits.

The ‘Cats improve to 5-1 on the season with the win and will now prepare to travel to Hoover Saturday for matchups against the Buccaneers and Flowery Branch.

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