Eagles' win cements Tuesday rematch with Bears
The Seymour Eagles staved off elimination Monday night at Cliff Davis Field with a thrilling 4-0 win over the Jefferson County Patriots.
“That was the Hunter Longmire we saw the first half of the season, just great command,” Seymour coach Scott Norman said of his junior righty, who pitched the complete, three-hit shutout.
The game was a pitcher’s duel throughout, as Longmire and Jeff County’s Eli Hammer went toe-to-toe for six innings of scoreless baseball before the Blue and Gold broke through against the Pats’ submarine-throwing lefty. Eagles shortstop Hunter Neff drilled a 2-2 pitch to center field, and the Patriots center fielder momentarily lost track of the shot. After he found the ball and chased it down, Neff was standing on second with a lead-off double.
“He hit it well,” Norman said. “Hunter Neff came up, he’s a clutch-player and he made a clutch hit.”
Catcher Cade Snapp followed that with a bloop single over second base, which put runners at the corners with no outs.
With Larry Kennedy at the plate and the pressure mounting, Hammer threw wildly to first in a pick-off attempt on courtesy runner Keaton Summers, which allowed Neff to break the 0-0 stalemate and sent Summers to third. A moment later Kennedy singled in Summers, and a Nick Walker single had two for the Eagles. After a failed bunt attempt, Corey Heard smoked a two-run triple the opposite way, staking Seymour to a huge 4-0 lead heading into the Patriots’ last trips to the plate.
Longmire gave up a two-out single in the frame — only the third hit he’d allowed all day — but enduced a 1-3 grounder to end the inning and keep the Eagles postseason alive.
“We’re just glad to be alive and get a chance to play Sevier County tomorrow,” Norman said. “
Seymour will face top-seeded Sevier County today at 5:30 in the teams’ third matchup of the year. Should the Bears win, they’ll advance to host the District 2-AAA championship on Wednesday. If the Eagles win, it will force an immediate double-header, since the Bears have yet to lose in the double-elimination tournament. That contest would start after a brief break from the first game.
“One pitch at a time,” Norman said. “We knew after Saturday’s loss that we needed a three-game winning streak, one game at a time. I believe in these guys.”