Leopards Play Spoiler, Force 3-Way Tie for NBC Title
Louisville 7, West Branch 4
The Louisville Leopards played spoiler in defeating the visiting West Branch Warriors 7-4 in the season finale. The Warriors loss forces the first three-way tie for the NBC Title in conference history. With the victory, Louisville finishes the year 9-14 overall and 8-6 in the NBC.
The Leopards took a 3-0 advantage through the first four innings, but the Warriors struck back with a 4-run fifth inning to take the lead. Louisville rekindled the lead in the bottom of the frame and never relinquished it.
Stephen Kerzan batted 1 for 2 with 2 runs scored and 2 runs batted in. His RBI single in the fifth knotted the game at 4-4. Joe Crank also went 2 for 4 at the plate and provided the go-ahead single in the same inning. Alex Hollifield led Louisville by recording 3 of their 9 hits on the evening and driving in a run.
On the mound, Corey Hileman pitched 6.1 innings, gave up no earned runs on just 4 hits, and struck out 1. Alex Hewitt also tallied a strikeout in earning a two-out save.
Kip DeShields and Jake Smith had the only RBI’s for West Branch. With the loss, the Warriors finish 14-12 overall and 11-3 in the conference. This means that Canton South, Marlington, and West Branch are all NBC Co-Champions at 11-3 in league play.
With the win, Louisville has now taken 8 out of the last 11 from West Branch overall.
Prior to the game the Leopards honored their five Senior Players. They included Riley Graybeal, Alex Hollifield, Jordan Hughes, Zach Shea, and Garrett Yoder. Leopard Nation would personally like to thank these Seniors for all their hard work, the great memories they created on the field, and their entertaining personalities within the dugout. Best of luck to you all!
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LEOPARDS 7, WARRIORS 4
West Branch 000-040-0–4-4-3
WEST BRANCH BATTING
WEST BRANCH WARRIORS PITCHING
LOUISVILLE LEOPARDS BATTING
LOUISVILLE LEOPARDS PITCHING
RECORDS: Louisville 9-14, 8-6; West Branch 14-12, 11-3