Facing a 2 run deficit heading into the top of the seventh inning against Delaware's Canal Post 25 on Wednesday, Post 2 did not panic. They had been here before. A game-tying single and go-ahead home run later, and Morgantown came out victorious as Post 2 defeated Post 25, 6-5, in 8 innings to advance in the winners bracket of the Mid-Atlantic Regional tournament in North Carolina.
Gavin Cottle (3-for-4, 2 RBIs) hit the game-tying RBI single to score Casey Smith in the seventh. With the game knotted at 4 a-piece in extras, Quintin Smith (2-for-4, 2 RBIs, HR) launched a moon shot 2-run home run in the eighth to put Post 2 up, 6-4. He got the team's MVP of the game because of it.
"Q brought the energy all game and that home run at the end was what sealed the deal," Coach Barnette said.
This was not the first time the boys from Morgantown have faced adversity this season. After losing to Bridgeport in the semifinals of the Area 2 Tournament, they had to win three straight games to advance to states. After dropping a 12 inning heart breaker to Berkeley Post 14 at the championship series of the state tournament last week, Post 2 came back yet again the next day. They overcame a 4-3 seventh inning deficit to walk-off Post 14, 5-4, and clinch their ticket to Asheboro.
"We've kind of seen every situations. We've been up big and we've been down big. We've battled back from big deficits and small deficits," Barnette said. "We just trust these guys."
On the mound, 14-year old Reed Bailey set the tone and pitched a no-hitter threw four before giving up 2 runs each in the 5th and 6th inning, and Barnette says he has pitched way beyond his years all summer.
"Throwing him out there game one, we know he's going to throw strikes, Coach Barnette said on Bailey. "He doesn't feel the pressure because he doesn't know what's going on yet."
Post 2 will play the winner of Wilmington (NC) and Funkstown (MD) tomorrow at 4:30 p.m. and Barnette knows the road to the World Series will not get any easier.
"Every team here is good. Every team has earned their way in. I haven't seen a bad baseball team yet," he said.