SKYLAND – Who has found all the eggs as Easter weekend approaches?
As of Wednesday, the answer as it pertains to Western North Carolina baseball was Roberson (8-0, 4-0) and Rosman (8-0, 6-0).
The mountains’ only two undefeated teams still have some work left to do before the holiday break – the Tigers were set to host Cherokee (0-3, 0-3) on Wednesday, while the Rams will entertain visiting Erwin (2-7, 0-4) on Thursday.
Roberson is sixth in the most recent Impact Baseball poll for NCHSAA 4-A. Rosman is unranked in 1-A.
“We’re more worried about where we finish than were we are right now,” Tigers coach Derrick Huggins said.
“We have three seniors at the top of our lineup who really set the table — Josh Rice, Cam Dotson and Tyler Petit. They do such a fantastic job. And the big thing after these first few games is our pitching and defense. Our pitchers have thrown real well and stayed low in the zone. And all of our guys have really eaten up those ground balls.”
Rosman has won four games by two or less runs as of Wednesday. Petit is the latest male winner of the NCHSAA Performance of the Week award.
Petit was 5-for-11 last week with seven RBIs, three runs scored, a home run, a double and three walks last week.
“We’ve got a lot of good kids,” Huggins said.
“It’s really all about the experience that they get from some of our seniors. I love it. It makes me feel good to know that I have graduating seniors and that the younger players are looking so good.”
Petit (.450), Rice (.389), Dalton Conley (.389), Dotson (.381) and Sonny DiBlasio (.333) are all batting .300 or better.
Roberson is the defending MAC 4-A champion and has outscored its eight opponents, 94-23. The Rams polished off North Buncombe with a 10-0 shutout Tuesday in Weaverville.
Nate Fore was the winning pitcher. No one in the Roberson pitching rotation has logged more than 13 innings so far. Fore has a 3.23 earned-run average with nine strikeouts in 13 innings pitched. Jack Galbraith has nine strikeouts and a pair of walks in 10.0 innings on the mound.
Leading hitters are Bryce Ballew (.500), Holden Upright (.476), Garrett Blaylock (.462), Trenton Davis (.458), Collin Watt (.409), Jake Morgan (.400), Jacob McCarthy (.360) and Chris Barnwell (.308).
Roberson jumped up to No. 6 in the first in-season NCHSAA 4-A poll from Impact Baseball after being an unranked team in the preseason.
“I still think we have a long ways to go,” Rams coach Eric Filipek said.
“But the one thing this group has shown is some real fight in the few games that have been close. They won’t be denied. It’s a great nucleus of guys who care about each other. Every game is another step and we’re not looking at the scoreboard, so much as we’re concerned about what we’re doing. There is no one guy who does it all for us.”
Galbraith is 3-0 for Roberson with a 0.70 ERA and nine strikeouts in 10 innings pitched, while Fore is 2-0 with a 3.23 ERA and nine strikeouts in 13 innings.