It wasn’t always pretty, but the North Hall baseball team got the job done in its Monday night region opener against Dawson County.
The Trojans gave up three runs in the first inning — one coming off a bases loaded walk and another on a fielding error — but managed to rally back and claim a 6-4 win to start the region schedule off on a positive note.
“A win is a win,” North Hall coach Trevor Flow said after the game. “We’ve got a long way to go, but anytime you can get an ugly win, that’s better than a pretty loss.”
Caleb Clark got the start for North Hall (2-6, 1-0 Region 7-3A), allowing all four Dawson County runs but striking out eight over four innings. He finished his outing strong — retiring the last seven batters he faced — but struggled in the opening inning.
Clark threw four straight balls to start the game with a leadoff walk. Dawson County loaded the bases with consecutive hits, and a mishandled grounder down the third-base line allowed the Tigers to score their first run. Clark walked the next batter to bring in the second, and the third came when Dawson County’s Carter Turkett stole home on a wild pitch.
“We have to throw strikes,” Flow said. “When you don’t, and you give the other team a head start, sometimes it’s hard to come back.”
Despite the lackluster start, it didn’t take long for the Trojans to battle back into the lead. Clark walked to start the bottom of the first, and Caleb Wiley was hit by the second pitch he saw. Clark was batted in by David Seavey, and Wiley was brought home by Dylan Wiley’s single to get the Trojans back to within one run of the lead.
North Hall took the lead in the second inning thanks to a pair of doubles from Caleb Payne and Clark to start things off and RBI singles from Tyler Brooks and Dylan Wiley later on.
The Trojans led 5-4 two innings in, but both teams cooled down offensively as the game wore on. Clark struck out four of the six batters he faced over the third and fourth innings, and his double over the same span was one of only two hits the Trojans managed as they struggled to bring in anymore runs.
Wes Tadman relieved Clark at the start of the fifth inning, and closed the game out with a one-hit, three-strikeout performance over the final three innings, not allowing a single Dawson County run.
“I’m really proud of Wes for coming in and finishing the game,” Flow said. “He hasn’t been with us a long time since he played basketball, so he hasn’t been out there a long time. I’m really proud of what he did in competing.”
North Hall pushed its lead to 6-4 when it scored off a Dawson County balk in the fifth. The Tigers went hitless in the sixth inning and could not convert a leadoff double in the seventh into any more runs, as North Hall claimed the victory.
“I’m proud of the way the guys battled and came back,” Flow said. “They got a W. But it wasn’t the prettiest win for sure.”