BNL finishes second in Hardball Classic

HUNTINGBURG – BNL’s Walker Ward pitched six strong innings as the Stars topped Northview in their first game of the Raider Hardball Classic on Saturday. Courtesy photo

HUNTINGBURG – Bedford North Lawrence finished as the runner-up in the Raider Hardball Classic during high school baseball action on Saturday.

The Stars (11-5) opened the tournament with a 9-4 victory over Northview, then suffered a 6-4 loss to host Southridge in the championship.

The weekend games started a seven-game road trip over the next 11 days.

“We’re going to be road warriors,” BNL coach Jeff Callahan said. “We have to be ready each and every night to compete.”

BNL 9, Northview 4 – In the opening game, the Stars scored five runs in the second inning to take control.

Singles by Maddox Ray, Kaedyn Bennett and Nate Pemberton loaded the bases. Cal Gates drew a walk to chase home the first run. With two outs. Kline Woodward cracked a two-run single, Cade Mungle followed with a RBI single, and Woodward later scored on a passed ball.

Gates lofted a sacrifice fly to makes it 6-0 in the third. In the fifth, the Stars added three more. Ray walked, stole second and scored on two wild pitches. Pemberton walked, Gates singled, Ryker Hughes added a sacrifice fly and Woodward added another RBI hit.

Bennett had three hits. Walker Ward earned the win on the mound, working six innings and allowing only three hits while fanning five. The Knights scored three runs in the seventh.

“We did a good job of scoring first, getting a cushion,” Callahan said. “Walker did a nice job. He pitched really well.”

HUNTINGBURG – BNL’s Kaedyn Bennett had three hits against Northview. Courtesy photo

Southridge 6, BNL 4 – The Raiders charged to a 6-0 lead, then survived BNL’s late rally.

Southridge scored twice in the first as Blake Taylor was hit by a pitch and Tate Whitehead doubled, setting up two sacrifice flys. In the third, the Raiders added four more runs, with Kaden Thyen and Rolan Whitehead driving in runs.

The Stars whittled away, getting two in the fifth. Gates and Hughes both singled, Woodward hammered a run-scoring double, and Jonny Stone added a sacrifice fly. In the seventh, BNL got two more on a bases-loaded error, but Southridge reliever Trey Vanmeter escaped more damage with a strikeout and double play (the fourth one turned by the Raiders).

Gates, Hughes and Woodward had two hits each for BNL. The Raiders collected only five hits.

“Those big innings hurt,” Callahan said. “We lost a tough one. We made some mistakes, and they took advantage of them. We fought back. We had the tying run on base, and you can’t ask for much more than that.”

BNL will visit New Albany on Monday. The Stars will learn their postseason fate when the IHSAA announces the sectional draws on Sunday.

HUNTINGBURG – BNL’s Kline Woodward had four hits in the two games. Courtesy photo