PREP BASEBALL: No. 6 Cullman splits doubleheader with Thompson

Easton Peed tossed seven innings, allowing one run on three hits and striking out eight in the Bearcats’ 3-1 win over Thompson Wednesday. (Nick Griffin/The Cullman Tribune)

CULLMAN, Ala. – After collecting a 6-4 win at Madison Academy Tuesday night, the Bearcats returned home to Bill Shelton Field Wednesday morning for a doubleheader with the Thompson Warriors. Easton Peed guided the ‘Cats to a 3-1 win in game one, pitching a complete game, allowing one run on just three hits and striking out eight batters. The score was tied for most of game two, but Thompson was able to pull away in the final two innings and defeat Cullman 7-3

Cullman 3 – Thompson 1 (Game One)

After the leadoff man got on base for Thompson in the top of the first, Jack Stanford gunned him down stealing second and Peed struck out the next two batters to end the top half of the inning. The Bearcats did a lot of damage in their half of the first. Zane Watwood led things off with a double and after a sacrifice bunt from Riley Jackson moved him to third, Kaleb Heatherly brought him home with a single up the middle to make it 1-0. Hayden Stancil was hit by a pitch and Stanford singled into right field to load the bases and Cullman used a passed ball and a fielder’s choice to stretch its lead to 3-0 going into the second.

Peed picked up four more strikeouts over the next two innings but the ‘Cats weren’t able to get their bats going again either. After a quick fourth and fifth inning, Cullman threatened to add to its lead in the bottom of the sixth but a double play on a live drive got Thompson out of the inning. An RBI single by the Warriors cut into the lead in the top of the seventh but Peed picked off a runner at first base to post the final out and secure a 3-1 win for the Bearcats.

Heatherly (one RBI), Stanford, Jackson, Watwood and Cole Robertson each finished with a hit in the win and Tucker Cagle added an RBI.

Thompson 7 – Cullman 3 (Game Two)

The Warriors didn’t allow themselves to get behind early in game two and they used an RBI single and a fielder’s choice to take a 2-0 lead after the top of the first. However, Cullman responded in the bottom half of the inning, starting with back to back singles from Zane Watwood and Riley Jackson. After both runners moved into scoring position on an error, Hayden Stancil punched a single into right field to score them and tie the game at 2 going into the second.

After a scoreless second inning, Thompson moved back in front 3-2 in the top of the third with an RBI single. Once again, the Bearcats answered in their half of the inning, tying things up at 3 when Jack Stanford drove an RBI single into left field. Neither team could get on the board in the fourth, but the Warriors threatened to score in the top of the fifth. A single, an error and a walk loaded the bases for Thompson but a fly ball to Watwood got Cullman out of the jam.

The Warriors were able to break the tie in the top half of the sixth. A pair of walks put a couple runners on the basepaths and a double, a fielder’s choice and a balk allowed Thompson to pull ahead 6-3 going into the bottom of the sixth inning. The Warriors tacked on another run in the top of the seventh to make it a 7-3 game and Cullman was unable to answer in the final frame.

Jackson finished 3-for-4 at the plate and Stancil (one hit) posted a pair of RBIs. Stanford (one hit) added an RBI and Watwood, Cole Robertson and Will Bradberry each finished with a hit as well.

The Bearcats will be back in action Thursday night when they travel to take on Valley High.

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