Jalyn Lee of Smithfield-Selma hit a two-run homer in the first inning and launched a three-run shot to right in the sixth to lift the Spartans to a 9-8 varsity baseball win at Triton on Wednesday night.
The Hawks (1-2) were in catch-up mode after SSS (3-0) took a 3-0 lead in the top of the first.
Baserunning blunders were plentiful and costly for Triton, a generally young and inexperienced team.
“The difference in us winning and losing was the mistakes we made on the base paths,” said Hawks coach Joey Miriello. “I thought we battled on the mound and at times at the plate. I knew we were capable of having games like this throughout the season. It’s just very important that we learn from our mistakes and correct them so they don’t happen again.”
Ethan Hedgepeth started for the Hawks and pitched into the fifth. Colby Parker did a mound stint before Zydarius McDougald tossed a scoreless seventh.
Colton Neighbors had an RBI single in the third to score Austin Riewestahl and cut the lead to 3-1.
Grayson Bradham had an RBI triple to bring in Tyler House in the fourth. Bradham scored on an error as the Hawks closed within 4-3.
Neighbors singled to start the fifth, stole second and came home on a sacrifice bunt by Hedgepeth as Triton tied the score at 4.
Two runs scored on an error in a five-run sixth for SSS before Lee connected for his second round tripper to put the visitors ahead, 9-4.
The Hawks got four of the runs back in the bottom of the sixth after Bradham led off with a walk and Riewestahl had a one-out single. Seth Gurkin and Neighbors had RBI singles. Neighbors stole two bases and scored on an error.
Hedgepeth reached on an error and scored on a triple by Christian Tyndall, but the Hawks left the potential tying run at third.
Miriello left following the game to be with his dad, Joe, who was having surgery at Rex Hospital in Raleigh.
Triton hosts Midway on Friday at 7 p.m.