Coach Chris Youngman’s Pleasant Valley baseball team extended its season-opening winning streak to five games on Feb. 27 with a 4-2 road win over Hokes Bluff. The string of wins ended Saturday as the Raiders fell to Jacksonville and Westbrook Christian by identical 11-1 scores in games played at Jacksonville’s Henry Farm Park. Thursday’s game at White Plains was rained out.
At Sunday’s seeding meeting for the annual Calhoun County baseball tournament the Raiders were seeded fifth, behind No. 1 Oxford, No. 2 Alexandria, No. 3 Piedmont and No. 4 Jacksonville. Youngman said Monday he and his assistants had envisioned a scenario in which Pleasant Valley could be at least the third seed with wins over Jacksonville and Westbrook, perhaps higher.
“We didn’t get the job done Saturday,” he said.
As the No. 5 seed, the Raiders will play Friday at 7 p.m. at Oxford’s Choccolocco Park against the winner of Friday’s 4:30 p.m. game between No. 12 Wellborn and No. 13. Anniston.
“We felt honored that the coaches in the county recognized our accomplishments to this point and put us at the No. 5 seed,” Youngman said. “Now we just have to mentally prepare and physically prepare … and then hopefully we can do our part to show that we earned that seed, it’s not a fluke, that we really worked hard and we’re a good ball team.”
Against Holes Bluff, Pleasant Valley led all the way. Alex Parris was hit by a pitch in the first and later scored an unearned run from first base on an outfield error. Reagan King doubled home Ashton King and Brody Phillips in the fourth to make it 3-0 Raiders. Drew Bonds opened the fifth with a double and scored on a base hit by Ashton King.
Ashton King was 3-for-3, all singles. Phillips had a double and a single. Parris, Caden Turner and Triston Salster each had a single.
Jackson Almaroad was the winning pitcher. He reached his pitch-count limit with two outs in the seventh inning. Almaroad fanned seven and walked one. Salster got the final out after allowing a hit and a walk.