HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – Lake Hamilton’s prospects of playing in the 5A Baseball State Tournament will likely be determined in its’ next two games at El Dorado and Texarkana. The Wolves (14-6, 7-4) are currently fourth in 5A South after senior Weston Dobyns silences Hot Springs Tuesday, 10-0.
Dobyns pitched five perfect innings, while contributing a home run and single at the plate. Freshman Kohen Manley teamed with Dobyns for a no-hitter, and combined 12 strikeouts in the six-inning game. The perfect game was lost when Caden Miller walked in the bottom of the six. Manley struck out the next three batters.
“I momentarily second-guessed myself about pulling Weston with a perfect game going,” said Lake Hamilton coach Matt Weigand. “We had to keep him under sixty pitches to have him ready for El Dorado on Friday. I hated doing that, but Weston is a team man and understands why we did it. We’ve got to beat El Dorado if we’re going to the state tournament. He’s a senior and wants to go to state.
“Weston is a good ball player. He’s been consistent for us all year. He does it all, on the mound, playing third, and bunting when we need it. Weston is a multi-tool guy for us.”
Wolves score four runs in first inning
Lake Hamilton scored all the runs it would need in the first inning off loser Shelor. Josh Parish walked, and Carson Harris reach on a Trojan error. Dobyns singled home Parish, and Dylan Horton doubled home Harris. Another infield error and single by Manley made it 4-0.
The Wolves added two more runs in the second. Parish doubled to left, and Harris was hit by a pitch. Dobyns moved both runners up with a sacrifice bunt. Parish scored on a errant pickoff throw, and JT Bardwell singled to right field, bringing Harris home.
Shelor escaped jams in the third and fourth, but Dobyns made it 9-0 with a long home run over the short left field fence. Earlier in the inning Jace Jointer and Easton Hurley scored on a wild pitch, and sacrifice fly by Harris.
There was a second reason for pulling Dobyns
The game came to a merciful conclusion in the sixth when Matt Carmack doubled, and scored on Joiner’s single to center.
Weigand had a second reason Tuesday for pulling Dobyns off the mound.
“We’re trying to find way to piece things together on the back end of our games,” he said. “We’ve struggled with that. Last week we dropped two games because we were unable to piece our pitching on the back end. We’re still trying to find guys who can come in during the sixth and seventh innings, and give us a chance to win.”