It took Harlan County two innings to shake off the rust of a six-day break on Tuesday, but the Bears quickly made up for lost time as they mauled visiting Perry Central 11-1 in five innings.
Harlan County trailed 1-0 before reeling off seven runs in the third inning to regain control. The Bears added three runs in the fourth inning, before putting the Commodores away with a run in the fifth inning.
“We have been off since last Thursday, and that could have been it. We got it rolling though. We came around and adjusted well and hit the ball,” said Harlan County coach John Lewis.
Sophomores Conner Leisge and Scotty Bailey led the HCHS offense with three singles each. Eddie Conley added a double and single. Braxton Fields and Blake Rutherford had two singles each. James Bond contributed a double. Tyler Dixon and Zach Jenkins added one single each.
Bond struck out three batters in two innings to claim the win on the mound. Tyler Cornett recorded two strikeouts and allowed one run in two innings in the start. Leisge pitched one hitless inning in relief.
“They have all answered every time we have put them out there this year. They have done their job,” Lewis said. “We are starting to spread them out a little bit and not pitch hole games. We are getting ready for the district tournament.”
Perry Central put together four hits in the first inning to take a 1-0 advantage, but the Commodores were held hitless from that point.
Harlan County (23-3) will host Hazard on Thursday. Perry Central (13-12) will host Betsey Layne today. With the win, the Bears are now tied for the second best record in the state along with West Jessamine and Bowling Green. Covington Catholic has the best mark at 27-3.
Perry Central 100 00 - 1 4 1
Harlan County 007 31 - 11 15 1
Sams, Turner (4), Collins (4) and Luttrell; Cornett, Bond (3), Leisge (5) and Boggs. WP-Bond. LP-Luttrell.