NICKELSVILLE — It seems to be par for the course this spring.
One game played, one rained out.
The Cumberland District baseball semifinals got under way on Wednesday at Keith Memorial Park in Nickelsville.
Castlewood fought off a determined effort by Rye Cove to come away with a 4-3 victory in the opener.
Eastside and Twin Springs took the field for the nightcap just before 5 p.m. under ominous skies. At 5:12, lightning streaked across the sky and the heavens opened up with a deluge.
By 5:30 it was determined that the game, which was in the bottom of the first with the Spartans leading 3-0, was a wash out. It was cancelled and will be played Wednesday at 5 p.m.
Castlewood (8-9) scored in the bottom of the first to take a 1-0 lead.
The Eagles (10-10) answered with a run of their own in the top of the second to tie the contest.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Blue Devils pushed three runs across the plate to take what appeared to be a comfortable 4-1 lead. Castlewood starter Dakota Grizzel, while not having his best day, was still in control with most of his pitches.
But in the top of the sixth, Rye Cove rallied and tacked on two more runs to narrow the gap to 4-3.
Grizzel (7-2) quashed the uprising and didn’t allow the Eagles to get any closer.
“It wasn’t my best outing,” said Grizzel, who has 12 strikeouts while walking five. “I couldn’t get my curve over for strikes so I used my change up more today than I had all season.
“I just labored and found a way to battle through things,” added Grizzel, who has thrown three no-hitters this season.
It was a typical knock-down, drag-out battle between the Blue Devils and Eagles.
“We’ve played them 10 times in the past three years,” said Castlewood coach Jonathan Salyers. “They rallied from a 9-1 deficit last year to beat us so I reminded my guys that Rye Cove would never give up no matter what the score. They are always a threat to rally.”
Gavan Collins led Castlewood, going 3-for-3 with an RBI while teammate Dillon Hartley went 2-for-3.
Rye Cove coach Terry Fields was philosophical about the outcome of the game.
“We made our own destiny today with the mistakes out in the field,” said Fields. “We threatened them, but the miscues hurt us.
“In baseball it comes down to the simple things,” added Fields. “But it’s not over till it’s over. We still have the regional tournament.”