The season came to an end for both squads with losses in the Region 1D semifinals played less than 5 miles apart.
PATRICK HENRY TOO STRONG
In Tuesday’s regional semifinal baseball game at Harding Field, Eastside’s Cole Harness smacked a three-run home run in the bottom of the third inning to give the Spartans (19-5) an early lead.
But the Rebels (15-6) battled back with consistent play to take a 7-5 win.
“It probably wasn’t as close as the scoreboard indicated. That one swing from Harness gave us a little boost,” said Eastside coach Chris Clay. “We just got outplayed.
“That’s a really good baseball team. Give a lot of credit to them. We ran our best three guys out there and didn’t have enough for them on the mound.
“The difference in the game I think was they were getting the leadoff man out and we weren’t,” Clay added. “And that led to some runs for them and not us.”
Trailing 5-3, Patrick Henry used a three-run fifth inning to take the lead for good.
Jackson Cruise finished 3-for-5 at the plate for the Rebels. Eastside’s Harness and Blake Rhoton both went 3-for-3.
Patrick Henry advanced to take on Honaker on Wednesday in the 6 p.m. championship game at the Tigers’ Harding Field. Honaker blasted Chilhowie 17-1 in Tuesday’s other semifinal contest.
Both regional finalists earned berths in the state tournament field.
LADY PANTHERS CLAW SPARTANS
Just down the road from Tuesday’s baseball regional semifinals, Eastside’s softball team suffered an 11-0 loss to the Lady Panthers of Northwood in a Region 1D softball semifinal at the Honaker Elementary School field.
Northwood (17-3) scored nine runs over the first three innings of the game, including a six-run third inning.
Junior Catie Boardwine finished 4-for-4 at the plate with three RBIs, while younger sister Chloe Boardwine — just a freshman — finished 3-for-4 at the plate with four runs batted in.
Northwood will play Chilhowie, which defeated Grundy 13-4 in Tuesday’s other semifinal, for the Region 1D championship Wednesday at Emory & Henry. First pitch is set for 5 p.m.