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Among the six unbeatens entering Tuesday’s final session of the Golden Leaf Invitational high school baseball tournament, Rosewood High, the 1-A Carolina Conference champion, became the first to claim a perfect (3-0) showing.
With West Johnston, North Johnston and Rocky Mount losing earlier in the day, the Golden Eagles stepped onto the Fleming Stadium diamond and dispensed with Eastern Christian Homeschool, 13-1, in five innings.
Rosewood failed to play a seven-inning game in dismantling Eastern, Nash Central, by a 13-3 score, and East Wake in a 23-1 blowout Monday. Head coach Jason King’s club outscored the opposition 39-5 in boosting its record to 16-3.
Rosewood’s chances to win the tournament took a hit when Faith Christian rallied for a 9-6 win over East Wake, leaving the combined record of Golden Eagles’ opponents at 2-6.
Faith Christian also finished 3-0, but the Patriots’ opponents were a combined 2-7. Fike wrapped up the tournament title with a 12-2 victory over South Granville on Tuesday night. Had the Demons lost, the Golden Eagles would have celebrated their first Golden Leaf crown.
Against the Trailblazers, Rosewood scored in every inning but the first and took command when it blended timely hits and Eastern walks into six runs in the fifth. The Eagles plated three runs in the second and two each in the third and fourth.
Eastern, 0-2 in the tourney, managed its run in the second and wound up with four hits as compared to 14 for Rosewood.
Winning pitcher Will Albert, a junior, started and worked four innings. Tanner Capps pitched the fifth. The pair combined for four strikeouts.
Albert and Capps swung potent bats with Albert slugging a triple and Capps connecting for a double. The Eagles turned two double plays.
“I feel good,” King assessed Rosewood’s three outings. “The boys had energy and were excited to be here. We swung the bats well, played good defense and the pitchers did very well.”
King hailed the tournament and mentioned the opportunity to participate as always a privilege.
“We’re ecstatic,” King declared. “Every game is important to us for playoff seeding and, of course, having a chance to win the tourney.”