CRESTVIEW — Justin Rebholz threw a three-hit shutout Tuesday night to lead the Crestview High School baseball team to a 4-0 win over Baker.
The Bulldogs scored all the runs they needed in the four-run third inning when, with two outs, they strung together five-consecutive hits.
Roman Donofro's two-run double was the big blow of the inning. The double scored Seth Thomason and Drew Graham, the courtesy runner for Bulldog catcher Austin Armstrong who had singled.
Tate Sweatt doubled home Donofro to make it 3-0. Rebholz helped his own cause with a single that scored Sweatt.
"We are very fortunate to win," Bulldog coach Tim Gillis said. "You've got to get the runs in especially when you get them there (in scoring position) with less than two outs. We had some good approaches in some situations and we had some bad approaches in some situations.
"We have to get good approaches all the time and the results will take care of themselves, but the approach has to be consistent. Give their guy credit, they pitched well in tough spots and we have to just keep getting better."
Rebholz was sharp on the mound throughout the game and had no tough spots against the Gators (6-9).
He scattered the three hits around. Garrett Sanders had a two-out single in the first inning, Alan Wiedenhammer a one-out base hit in the fifth and Adam Crowson had a one-out single in the sixth.
Rebholz also allowed just two walks in limiting the Gators to five base runners while striking out four Baker batters.
While Rebholz never found himself in a serious jam the Bulldog threatened Gator pitcher Jake Rainey throughout the game.
Crestview (9-4) touched Rainey for 12 hits, a walk and a hit batter.
When the final numbers were tallied the Bulldogs left 10 runners on base and six in scoring position.
The Bulldogs loaded the bases with no out in the bottom of the sixth inning, but where unable to score. Rainey got Corey Armstrong to ground into a fielder's choice that had Wiedenhammer getting the force out at the plate for the first out of the inning.
Rainey then struck out Thomason and Austin Armstrong to work all the way out of the jam.
Donofro, Thomason and Rebholz led the Crestview attack with two hits each. Donofro and Thomason both had a single and a double while Rebholz had two singles.
Gator coach Scott Johnson was pleased with the way his Class 1A team played against the 6A Bulldogs.
"I'm very proud of them and I have been the whole time,". Jake Rainey has done a fabulous job for us as our pitcher. The defense helped us out a little bit tonight.
"What has always been our Achilles heel is we haven't caught the ball very well. If you throw it right and catch it and make them put in play, you have a chance. We are heading in the right direction.
Randy Dickson is the Crestview News Bulletin’s sports editor. Email him at email@example.com, tweet him @BigRandle, or call 682-6524