Spring Valley outlasts Redhawks in scorefest

BLYTHEWOOD – The Westwood baseball team battled with Spring Valley for more than three hours Monday night at Spring Valley.

Down 14-12 in the top of the seventh inning, the Redhawks scored two runs to tie the game, then loaded the bases with two out when Nathan Caldwell, who was 4-for-5 on the night, came to bat.

Caldwell had two strikes against him when he made solid contact and smashed the ball between third base and shortstop. Spring Valley third baseman Newton Goodson fielded the smash and fired the ball to Dylan Redden at second base for the force out that ended the inning.

Westwood’s Ni’J Steadman, the fourth pitcher of the night, had been on the mound since the fifth inning. Steadman got Preston Jackson to ground out, but Jayden Williams got on base with a double to leftfield. Williams took third as Daniel Bledsoe batted, and Bledsoe’s single to right field brought Williams home and gave Spring Valley a 15-14 victory.

“It’s been our nemesis all year long, not making the crucial plays when we need to, especially when we’re up,” head coach Nathan Caldwell said. “We’re still continuing to work on that and trying to get that taken care of.”

Westwood (8-11, 2-7 Region 5-4A) took an early lead with three runs in the first inning. Spring Valley got a run in the bottom of the first and another run in the third to make it a 3-2 game going into the fourth inning.

In that frame Xavier DeJesus doubled and Caldwell drove him in with a 2-out single to make it 4-2 Redhawks. Springfield took its first lead of the game with four runs in the bottom half of the inning to make it 6-4.

From then on the lead changed four times as Westwood and Spring Valley scored three runs apiece in the fifth and five runs apiece in the sixth.

The game featured seven pitchers who walked 16 batters. Both teams combined for 24 hits but also 13 errors.

“I really thought our bats came alive. We’ve been hitting the baseball,” Coach Caldwell said. “Our biggest thing again has been pitching, and it has been walks. We ran through some pitching. We didn’t want to go through our aces, so we let some guys throw that don’t normally get a chance to throw.”

When it came to the final inning, both teams were itching to put an end to it.

In Westwood’s half, Austin Jeffcoat grounded out and Steadman flied out, but Micah Henryhand drew a walk, Zach Hardy was hit by a pitch. Pinch Hitter Rae Seaton, batting in Jayden Quarles’ slot, had two strikes on him. Spring Valley pitcher Daniel Bledsoe threw a wild pitch, which moved Henryhand and Hardy up a base.
Henryhand scored on a second wild pitch to make it 14-13, and Hardy scored the game tying run on Seaton’s infield single. Quarles replaced Seaton as pinch runner.

DeJesus singled, then Moore took first base on a catcher’s interference called on his pop fly, which loaded the bases for Caldwell.

Unfortunately for the Redhawks, Westwood couldn’t get a go-ahead run across, and the Vikings came up with two clutch hits for the win.

Westwood’s final two-game region series plays out this week. On Tuesday night the Redhawks beat Richland Northeast 4-2 and visit the Cavaliers Thursday. Winning both games would give the Redhawks a good streak into the postseason.

“I believe that if we make the plays behind those guys we can be successful. We’ve got some things that we can get rocking and rolling, and hopefully we can get hot going into the playoffs,”

Caldwell said. “We’ve got some things that we’re going to get taken care of so that we can win these last two games.”

Westwood is currently in fourth place with its only two region wins coming against Ridge View, the fifth-place team. Richland Northeast is in sixth.


Westwood – 0-0-0-0-0-2-0 – 2, 4, 1

Irmo – 0-0-7-0-0-4-X – 11, 8, 1

WP: Mason Burdette.

Hitters: I – Dylan White 4-5, 2B(3), 4 RBI. Sam Turner 2B, 2 RBI. Elliott Graham 2B, 2 RBI. Hunter Parsons 2B.


Westwood – 3-0-0-1-3-5-2 – 14, 16, 7

Spring Valley – 1-0-1-4-3-5-1 – 15, 8, 6

WP: Daniel Bledsoe

Hitters: W – Nathan Caldwell 4-6, 4 RBI. Xavier DeJesus 3-5, 2B, 2 RBI. Ni’J Steadman 3-5. Kellen Moore 2-4. S – Newton Goodson 2-4, 2 RBI. Jayden Williams 2B. Walker Thompson 2B.


RNE – 0-0-2-0-0-0-0 – 2, 3, 1

Westwood – 4-0-0-0-0-0-0 – 4, 1, 1

WP: Rae Seaton.

Hitters: R – Isaiah Small 2-3. Amari Smith 2 RBI. W – Ni’J Steadman 2B, 2 RBI.

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