'Landers rally to beat 'Dogs

from staff reports


   Cloudland rallied behind Josh Johnson's grand slam scoring five runs in the final inning to defeat Hampton 13-12 in prep baseball action Friday.
   Down by four going into the bottom of the seventh, Johnson's grand slam tied the game at 12-apiece. Next batter Mark Byrd got on base with a T.J. Lunsford double advancing Byrd to third. Caleb Denton hit a shot to the shortstop area, allowing Byrd to score the winning run.
   These four batters had 11 of the team's 16 hits. Johnson went 3-for-4, Lunsford was 4-for-5 with 2 RBI's, Denton was 2-for-4 and Byrd, who doubled as winning pitcher, went 2-for-5. Mark Barnett added a home run for the victorious Highlanders.
   On the Bulldog side, Ryan Deskins went 3-for-5. Dusty Crumley was 3-for-4 including a 3-run homer in the third. Brad Hodge added another three-run shot in the inning that saw the Bulldogs rally from a six-run deficit to take a 7-6 lead when the top of the third ended.
   Cloudland tied the game in the bottom frame, before taking a lead of 8-7 in the bottom of the fifth. Adam Miller hit a two-run home run in the top of the sixth that highlighted the Bulldogs scoring five in the inning.
   The Highlanders now stand at 11-8 on the season. They are 3-2 in the Watauga Valley Conference, where they face off with league rival North Greene at Baileyton on Monday.
   Hampton will try to recover from the disappointment of this loss when they host Sullivan Central at 4 p.m. on Monday.