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Walk-off Winner


Garrett Price (center) is mobbed by teammates after his ground ball drove in Will Wilkins, who scored the winning run from second base in Searcy's 7-6 win in eight innings over Vilonia on Thursday.

By Bruce Guthrie sports@thedailycitizen.com

All Garrett Price wanted to do was drive in his teammate. Though he won't get official credit for it, the ground ball off his bat in the bottom of the eigth that consumed Vilonia's second baseman allowed Will WIlkins to score in the bottom of the eighth inning to give Searcy a dramatic, if not gut-wrenching 7-6 win over Eagles at home on Thursday.

"Tip caps to Vilonia," Searcy head coach Matt Davis said. "They battled the entire game. They came up with big hits, and our guys did a great job holding the rope right there and keeping the faith and putting ourselves in position. It's one of those things where you put the ball in play and good things are going to happen."

The faith that they would win was tested in the final innings, especially the seventh when Vilonia scored two runs to tie the game at 6-6

Vilonia scored four runs in their comeback from a 6-2 deficit that Searcy built in the first four innings. Vilonia used hits by Nick Howard in the fifth, and the sixth innings, a groundout in the seventh, and a single by Jordan Korzen in the seventh.

Searcy captured the lead in the first inning when Price singled with two outs in the first inning. Hannah scored on Vilonia's first error of the game and Searcy had a 3-0 lead.

After Vilonia scored one run in the top of the second, Searcy answered with one of their own when Wilkins' hit drove in Kory O'Neal.

Vilonia knotted the game up at six in the top of the seventh inning on a double steal including a steal from home by Chris Bass and another RBI from Korzen.

The Lions had a chance to end the game in the seventh inning after drawing walks off Bass to load the bases with one out. But after Vilonia called Luke Gordon to the mound, Bowman popped out on the infield and Hannah's soft liner barely found the glove of Vilonia's shortstop to end the inning and leave the bases loaded.

Gordon wasn't as fortunate in the eighth. Wilkins drew a walk and stole second putting himself in position to score on Price's ground ball.

Hannah earned the win for Searcy working an inning and two thirds allowing no runs, one hit, and walking one.

Hayden Bowman started on the bump for Searcy (13-5, 5-2) pitching five and a third innings, allowing four runs on four hits, and striking out six.

Price went 1-for-3 at the plate as he led the team with three runs batted in.