By: Drew HarrisWarrior

(Cleveland) White County starting pitcher Joel Pritchett and Stephens County starter Evan Ramsey locked horns in a dandy of a pitcher’s duel in both team’s region opener on Friday night. Both went seven innings and gave up no runs. It would take three extra innings, but the Indians scored two in the top of the 10th and the Warriors had the tying run thrown out at the plate twice in a 2-1 loss.

Joel Pritchett continued his stellar start to the season on the mound. He would finished by striking out seven Indian batters and scattered nine hits over his seven innings of work. He has now pitched a total of 19 innings and given up only two earned runs (0.73 ERA). The Warrior bats just couldn’t get anything going against Ramey.

Both pitchers had to give way to relievers in the 8th. John Henry Mullis took over for Pritchett and went the final three innings striking out five. In the top of the 10th, the Indians broke through as UGA football commit Ben Cleveland launched  a solo homer. They added another run on  an error to take a 2-0 lead. The Warriors would threaten in their half of the 10th as they loaded the bases with nobody out. After a strikeout, Jason Ward scored on a passed ball to cut the deficit to 2-1 and put the tying run on 3rd and winning run on 2nd. With the infield in, Chris Jackson hit a grounder to 2nd and Pritchett was cut down at the plate for the second out. Joe McGuire, who was courtesy running for Stetson Gearin, then tried to score on a wild pitch but was also thrown out to end the game.

Stetson Gearin led the Warriors with two hits. Pritchett, Ethan Ramey, Tray Gearin, and Trey Allen had one hit a piece.

The Warriors fell to 2-7 on the year with the loss and 0-1 in region play. Their next contest will be in Toccoa on Monday at 5:55 as the Warriors look for some revenge against Stephens County.