Brendan Wright’s bloop single in the bottom of the ninth inning lifted Holly Springs to a 1-0 extra-innnings victory over visiting Green Hope in a Southwest Wake Athletic Conference baseball showdown on Friday night.
Hits were rare for either side as the game was done in a little over an hour and a half despite going two extra innings. Green Hope (8-5, 5-4) didn’t get a hit until the sixth and finished the game with three. Holly Springs (11-3, 7-2) had five hits, including the final one by Wright.
“I’ll take it. My mentality was just ‘see ball, hit ball.’ If it’s a strike I’m swinging hard,” Wright said. “When it gets late, we fight like nothing else.”
Green Hope pitcher Jordan Montgomery, a Campbell recruit, struck out seven batters in 8 1/3 innings before reaching the pitch count limit.
Holly Springs pitcher Matt Willadsen struck out eight in nine innings and didn’t allow a ball to leave the infield until the seventh.
“He can throw any pitch at any time,” coach Rod Whitesell said of Willadsen. “He threw his curveball, his changeup. When you can throw any pitch in any count you can be tough and he was really tough tonight.”
There were a number of standout defensive plays behind both pitchers. Holly Springs got a 4-6-3 double play to end the top half of the sixth and made a tough 6-5 force play to end the sixth.
Green Hope’s Jordyn Adams gunned down a runner trying to tag up from second base and catcher Kevin Pitarra threw out runner to end the eighth.
The Golden Hawks have now won eight straight and sit second in the SWAC, just a half-game behind Fuquay-Varina.
The Falcons, now in fourth place, have lost three of their last five and have been shut out in all three losses.
“We just aren’t scoring runs,” Green Hope coach Mike Miragliuolo said. “But I was proud as heck of our guys because we were up in the dugout, our defense was amazing out there over and over ... all-around, defense was great, pitching was great. We just need to get some runs.”