Game 10 - August 14, 2016

Shelby, NC - Rowan County (N.C.) Post 342 controlled its own destiny Sunday afternoon in the final day of American Legion World Series pool – and completely exercised that control.

Post 342 (40-13) led 4-0 after three innings, added three more in the fifth and closed out with a four-run eighth, downing Kennewick, Wash., Post 34 12-0 in eight innings. Rowan County ended pool play 2-1 to advance to Monday’s semifinals.

Rowan County had won 10 straight games heading into the series but lost a 3-0 lead in its first game in falling to Indiana. The past two games have been a different story.

“It was a hard loss, but it was kind of a wake-up,” said Post 342 right fielder Lee Poteat, who was 2-4 at the plate with three RBIs. “It was just good to get that loss underneath our belt and realize that we do need to play as hard as we can and stay focused in order to win this tournament.”

Two singles and a walk loaded the bases for Rowan County in the top of the first, setting up Juan Garcia’s sacrifice fly. Three hit batters set up RBIs from Hunter Shepherd and Poteat in the second, and Tanner File added an RBI single in the third to open up a 4-0 lead.

Shepherd and Poteat had RBIs in the fifth, and Post 342 paired two hits with three walks and a hit batter to score four in the top of the eighth. A scoreless bottom of the inning ended the game because of the 10-run rule.

Trevor Atwood went 3-3 with two runs and an RBI for Post 342, while Shepherd added three RBIs and Jake Pritchard three runs scored.

Shepherd (2-0) coasted through seven innings, allowing just four hits and striking out two. Brandon White pitched a scoreless eighth.

“We don’t have a lot of power,” Post 342 coach Jim Gantt said. “We just base hit. We pitch and play defense and get timely hitting. That’s the key to any good baseball team.”

Kennewick, which got two hits from Dillon Plew, finished 54-17.