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Scorpions breeze by Eagles in shutout

East Bladen catcher Cliff Koenig misses a bad throw at home allowing North Brunswick’s Jared Strange to score and put his team ahead 6-0 during the 4th inning Tuesday night. (Photo by Photo by Jeff Janowski)

By Martin Rickman

LELAND | A glut of stranded base runners and a pair of four-run innings doomed East Bladen on Tuesday, as North Brunswick moved back into a share of the Waccamaw Conference lead with a 10-0 win over the Eagles in six innings.

Dylan Reed pitched five scoreless innings, striking out five, as he and the four other Scorpion seniors (Steven Linkous, Matt Lowry, Matt Renning and David Zacek) shined in the last regular-season home game for North Brunswick.

Linkous led the way, going 2-4 with two runs scored and two stolen bases. Tyler Barnes went 2-2 with two walks and added two runs and two RBI for North Brunswick. As a team, the Scorpions had eight stolen bases on the night, consistently getting into scoring position and putting pressure on the East Bladen defense.

"I'm really proud of my seniors," North Brunswick coach Randy Fennell said. "I got a little emotional with some of these guys during pregame. Three of my seniors have been playing varsity ball since they were freshmen. I'm just glad they had a good game tonight and were able to finish their last home game on that note."

East Bladen (6-12, 0-10) also had little trouble getting men on base, but bringing them home was more of a struggle. The Eagles left 10 runners on base through five innings and had another picked off.

East Bladen's three through six hitters were a combined 6-10 on the night with two walks, but the bottom of the order couldn't capitalize.

Reed took advantage for North Brunswick, pitching out of jams by maintaining his composure, and he improved his record to 3-0 on the season.

"Dylan was able to get some pitches when he needed to," Fennel said. "He really pitched like a senior on the mound tonight. His last inning, he had better velocity and command than he had all night, and that's just a testament to how he wanted to finish the game."

The Scorpions (16-4, 8-3) moved into a share of first place with Whiteville with their regular season finale at South Columbus on Thursday.

East Bladen will try to avoid going winless in conference play at home against West Bladen on Friday.