WINTER GARDEN The West Orange Warriors rallied back from a two run deficit to force extra innings against the Lake Brantley Patriots March 30.
Later, in the bottom half of the eighth inning, Doug Nikhazy successfully bunted in Deandre Shelton from third base on a squeeze play to give the Warriors (17-2, 5-0 district) the 4-3 victory — keeping West Orange undefeated in District 9A-3.
Lake Brantley's Connor McDonald hit a two-run home run in the top of the fourth inning to break what had been a 1-1 tie and put the Patriots up — though those would be the last two runs Lake Brantley would score on either Warriors starter Tyler Baum or reliever Ethan Jones, who was credited with the win.
In both the bottom half of the fourth and again in the bottom half of the fifth, Ethan Jones would double down the left field line and — in each half inning — a teammate would drive him in on a two-out RBI. In the fourth inning, it was catcher Matt Coello whose single brought home Jones and in the bottom half of the fifth inning it was Shelton who drove in pinch-runner Alec Larue.
Baum tossed a total of 5.2 innings for the Warriors, striking out seven while allowing three runs (two earned). Jones allowed one hit in 2.1 innings of work and struck out three batters.
Contact Steven Ryzewski at [email protected].