Clinton, Laurens continue playoff pushes with wins
The Clinton and Laurens baseball teams both moved closer to Upper State championships with home victories Saturday.
LDHS won the Class 4A District 1 title with a 5-2 victory over rival Greenwood, beating the Eagles for the second time in the district round.
Earlier, Clinton downed Seneca 6-3 to remain unbeaten in the Class 3A Upper State round.
Clinton is a victory away from the Upper State championship. The Red Devils will host the winner of Monday’s elimination bracket game between Seneca and Belton-Honea Path on Wednesday. Clinton must be beaten twice in order to be eliminated from the playoffs.
LDHS is set to travel to District 2 champion Catawba Ridge at 7 p.m. Tuesday to begin a best-of-three series for the Class 4A Upper State championship. The Raiders are making their first Upper State championship appearance since 1991. LDHS won a state title that year.
Clinton 6, Seneca 3
Starting pitcher Carson Glenn picked up his second playoff victory this week, scattering four hits, walking two and striking out three in 4 1/3 innings of work.
Glenn was pulled with a 5-1 lead in the fifth after 71 pitches, and Justin Copeland survived a bumpy start in relief to pick up his second save in as many games.
The Red Devils (22-3) led start to finish, getting two runs in the first inning on a one-out RBI double from Wilson Wages and an RBI single from Copeland that scored Wages.
Seneca manufactured a run in the fourth to cut the Clinton lead to 2-1, but the Red Devils answered with three runs in the fourth on a bases-clearing double by Wil Stewart, who went 2-for-4 with 3 RBI. Copeland also collected two hits, going 2-for-3 with run driven in.
LDHS 5, Greenwood 1
Junior right-hander Josh Hughes pitched a complete game four-hit gem, holding Greenwood to a single run to lead the Raiders into the Class 4A Upper State championship.
Hughes struck out five and walked none as the Raiders (18-9-1) gave him a quick 3-0 cushion over the first two innings. Jackson Martin hit a run-scoring triple in the first to score Zay Pulley, who had reached on a dropped third strike.
Jaedon Goodwin also led off the fourth with a solo homer directly over the Ed Prescott Field sign in center field.
Hunter Nabors went 2-for-3 with a stolen base, a run scored and an RBI. Goodwin went 1-for-2.