Alleghany scored two runs in the ninth inning to spoil another stellar pitching effort from Ashe County’s Joseph Lowder and deal Ashe its seventh loss of the season.
Lowder pitched eight innings and surrendered four runs (one earned) on six hits with six walks but recorded a whopping 17 strikeouts.
Ashe scored first on an RBI triple from Hunter Barnes in the bottom of the first. Barnes then scampered home on a wild pitch to make the score 2-0.
The Trojans tied things up in the fourth inning. Chandler Caudill led off with a single and then went to second on an error by the Ashe catcher. Jake Hampton ripped a single to left that scored Caudill. Next up, Austin Easter singled to left that allowed Hampton to score.
Ashe moved back in front in the fifth inning on a sacrifice fly from Lowder. Bradley Richie walked, moved to second on a wild pitch and then moved to third on the sacrifice fly that scored Joe Richardson. The catcher then made it home safely on a wild pitch, giving Ashe a 4-2 advantage.
Alleghany got right back to its scoring ways in the sixth. Hampton scored a run and Taylor Post drove in Easter with a single.
Ashe nearly won the game in the seventh inning after Lowder got to third on an error by Hampton but was thrown out at home trying to score the game-winning run.
In extra innings, Ashe loaded the bases when Carter Calhoun reached on an error, Richardson was hit by a pitch and Richie walked.
With two outs, Hampton came up with some big pitches to strike out Alex Laws and send the game to the ninth.
Ashe went to the bullpen and used Matthew Hamilton to pitch after Lowder’s eight-inning start.
Hampton led the ninth off with a triple to left field.
Hamilton buckled down and retired Brandon Eubanks on strikes and got Matt McMillan to fly out to short stop. On the pop out however, Hampton used his speed to tag up from third and score the go-ahead run.
Easter stole third base after being walked and moving to second on a fielder’s indifference. Tyler Houck blooped a single behind second base to bring in Easter from third.
Hampton was able to close the door on Ashe in the bottom of the ninth inning to get the victory. He pitched three innings in relief and gave up just one hit and no runs.
Lowder was strong on the mound and also solid at the plate with two hits, one walk and a run knocked in. Barnes finished with a run scored, one hit, one RBI and two walks. Richie scored twice and reached base three times while Richardson had one hit, two walks an a run scored from the leadoff position.
Hampton was just as good at the plate, recording three runs, three hits and an RBI. Easter, McMillan, Post and Houck each added an RBI.
Ashe is now 5-7 overall and 3-5 in conference games.
The Huskies will travel to Elkin on Tuesday, Avery County on Wednesday and host Starmount on Thursday.
*Nathan Ham can be reached at (336) 846-7164 or on Twitter @NathanHam87