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Neuse Charter grabs first league sweep

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SMITHFIELD — Neuse Charter School took down 1-A Carolina Conference rival Princeton, 4-3, at home April 10 in a 10-inning thriller via a walkoff error.

Freshman Collin Danielson came up to the plate with the bases loaded after senior Kreston Parker’s single deep into the outfield. Danielson chopped a pitch to the shortstop who tossed the ball over the second baseman’s head to allow senior Kreston Parker to score.

“We could get a sac fly or a hit so really I was just thinking win the game really,” Danielson said.

The win gave the Cougars (4-11, 2-6 CC) the first sweep of a conference opponent in the baseball program’s history. All the players were excited about making history as they dumped a cooler of water on their head coach Jeremy Repka. The team is hoping that this win could be the start of a late season run.

“We need that, we been hype all season and now the first time we swept a team ever, it just feels great,” freshman Oscar Vaughn said. “We got to get the hype up every game and wins like that can last the whole season.”

The loss was the Bulldogs’ (4-8, 2-6 CC) fifth straight.

“It’s tough anytime you lose, regardless of the innings played,” Bulldogs head coach Justin Willoughby said. “One game at a time is been the motto all along, we never looked ahead, never looked behind. I know every time we play we try to prepare as best as we can and prepare as best as we can.”

Between the two teams only one earned run was scored. Princeton senior Will Gurganious pitched 3 1/3 innings allowing four hits, the unearned game-winning run and a walk while striking out two. Neuse Charter freshman Aidan Phillips pitched the final five innings to pick up the win, allowing no runs and three hits while punching out two.

“Huge moments to step up by freshmen,” Repka said. “We have to win out. Rosewood will be hard, but if we win out we’re knocking on the playoffs door.”

Score by innings:

Princeton0012000000 —0

Neuse Charter020010000 1—0

WP-Aidan Phillips (1-0) 5 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 2 K. LP-Will Gurganious (0-1) 3 1/3 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 2 SO.

LEADING HITTERS — Princeton: Will Gurganious 1-3, RBI; Charlie Benton 2-4, RBI. Neuse Charter: Colin Danielson 2-5, 2 RBI; Elijah Batts 1-4, RBI.