Florence foils P-31 in finale

-A A +A
By Robert Howey

The Lancaster Post 31 capped its 2018 Legion baseball season, dropping a 9-2 road loss to Florence Post 1 at Legion Field in Florence on Tuesday night.

Lancaster, 3-10, was tied with Florence, the two-time defending state champion, at 2-all going to the sixth inning when host Florence ignited to put the game away.

Lancaster broke on top early, 2-0 before Florence tied the game and then sealed the game in the Post 1 sixth inning.

“The game was kinda like our entire season,” Lancaster P-31 coach Jimmy Jackson said. “We played well enough to be in the game with one of the state’s best teams, and then we just can’t finish and things kind of snowballed on us.”

Florence, 18-4, took control in the sixth inning.

Weidner Wilfong drilled a hit to open the frame and later had a RBI-double.

Jon-Mitchell Carter put Florence up to stay, 3-2 with a RBI single.

Carter had a big night at the plate with a double, single, stolen base and scored three runs.

Korique Rainey and Davis Cook had bases-loaded walks, while Will Hardee and Lex Tuten provided sacrifice flies in the decisive Post 1 inning.

Rainey hurled the win for Florence.

Lancaster’s Dylan Montgomery was outstanding on the mound into the sixth inning.

“Dylan got squeezed a bit and when you have to lay it in there on a team like Florence they’re going to make you pay,” Jackson said. “We were able to compete with the best teams in the state, Rock Hill, Fort Mill and Florence.

“We just have to figure out a way to finish games in the future,” Jackson said. “I feel it will come. This season was a great learning experience for myself and the team.”

William Wrape led the Lancaster offense with two hits. Anson Taylor had a hit and scored a run.

Brett Sistare, Austin Catoe and Ryan Moore each added a hit.

Russell Noland walked and scored a run.

Lancaster and Florence were slated to play again today, but the game was cancelled due to a scheduling issue.

Jackson said he’s grateful for all who contributed to the 2018 P-31 season, the team’s 75th campaign in American Legion baseball.

“We thank all of our sponsors and fans for their support during our 2018 season,” Jackson said. “We play in a tough league, but we’re going to keep working to get our Legion baseball program where we want it to be.”

Jackson was assisted by Brian Sistare and Toby Taylor this season.

Scott Cato is the P-31 athletic officer.