Game 14 - August 15, 2016
Shelby, NC - Cole Boyd jump-started Texarkana, and Logan Vidrine and the Razorback defense took over from there.
Boyd hit a first-inning home run, and Vidrine pitched a shutout thru 6.2 innings, leading Post 58 past Rockport, Ind., Post 254 4-1 in the American Legion World Series semifinals. The win put Texarkana (41-5) into the series’ title game against Rowan County, N.C., Post 342 at 7 p.m. Tuesday night on ESPNU.
Vidrine (1-0) pitched into the ninth inning, allowing just three hits and one earned run to a Rockport squad that went 3-0 in pool play and finished 35-2. His defense committed just one error behind him.
Vidrine said he knew he had strong stuff when he looked up on the scoreboard after the sixth inning and saw nothing but zeroes for Rockport. “I was really confident,” he said. “I just felt good, felt great, on the mound. My teammates had my back. It was good. It was definitely a position I wanted to be in.”
Texarkana manager Dane Peavy wasn’t surprised by his pitcher’s performance. “We’ve gone with him all year,” he said. “He plays such a good defensive third base that we really don’t pitch him that much. We knew he’s capable of that.”
Vidrine had the benefit of an early lead when Boyd went deep with one out in the first inning. It was his first home run of the national tournament.
“It’s a momentum shift,” Peavy said. “I don’t think at any point in the game … that we relinquished momentum. I think we kept it all throughout the game.
The Razorbacks added two more runs in the top of the third when Matt Goodheart reached on an error and Blake Hall took first on catcher’s interference. Will Smith then brought both home with a single, giving Post 58 a 3-0 lead.
ndiana starter Sammy Rowan kept Texarkana at bay the next two innings, but Rockport lost an opportunity to cut into the lead in the bottom of the sixth. Leading off, Zach Hopewell walked and then moved to third on an errant pick-off attempt. But Post 58 shortstop Riley Orr made a stabbing grab of Kobe Stephens’ line drive for the first out, and Vidrine got a pop-up to first and fly ball to center field to end the threat.
Post 254 did break through in the bottom of the seventh. With two outs, Brenden Lewis walked and then came home on Hunter Rowe’s double. Rowe advanced to third on the throw but was stranded when Vidrine got a groundout to end the inning.
Texarkana added an insurance run in the top of the eighth the way it started the game. With one out, Beau Burson’s shot cleared the left-center fence, pushing the lead to 4-1.
Vidrine allowed a lead-off walk to start the ninth inning and was replaced by Burson. A fly ball and two strikeouts later, Texarkana was in the final.