The Hazard Bulldogs opened their 2016 quest for the All “A” state title on the road at Jackson City. The Bulldogs got off to a slow start, but were able to move into the semifinal round with a 14-4 win over the Tigers.
Hazard picked up enough runs to win the game in the first inning as they exploded for 10 runs in the frame. The rally was highlighted by a two-run home run off the bat of Rudy Akemon. Jackson City would muster but a single run in the bottom of the inning.
The two teams would trade runs in the second inning, leaving the Bulldogs with the 11-2 advantage. Hazard went up 13-2 in the third inning, and 14-2 at the end of the top portion of the fifth inning.
Jackson City needed three runs in the bottom portion of the fifth inning if they were going to keep the game going. The Tigers picked up a pair of runs on a home run, but the rally then ended, giving the Bulldogs the 14-4 win.
Griffin Wells picked up the win with just one inning of work. Wells had 1 hit, 1 run, 1 walk and 2 strikeouts. Blake Lockhart worked two innings with 2 hits, 1 run, 1 walk and 5 strikeouts, while Chase Ford threw two innings with 3 hits, 2 runs and 1 walk.
Hazard (14) Griffin Wells 2 runs, 2 hits and 1 RBI, Rudy Akemon 2 runs, 2 hits (HR) and 2 RBI, Cole Ratliff 2 runs and 2 hits, Devin Morris 2 runs, 3 hits and 3 RBI, Kyle Johnson 1 run and 1 hit, Ryan Smith 2 runs and 2 hits, Bailey Blair 1 run, 1 hit and 2 RBI, Andy Baker 2 runs, 4 hits and 3 RBI and Blake Nidiffer 1 RBI.
Tony McGuire can be reached at 606-436-5771 or on Twitter @HazardHerald.