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March 25, 2014

PREP ROUNDUP: Bearcats bounce back with two strong wins over Vestavia, Overton (Tenn.)

HOOVER — Cullman received strong starts from Sam Huser and Branch Hill and came up with some big-time base hits to grab a doubleheader sweep versus Vestavia Hills (11-1) and Overton, Tenn. (7-1) at the Hoover Classic on Tuesday afternoon.

Huser pitched a five-inning complete game, allowing one run on four hits and punching out four Rebel hitters to improve to 5-0 on the season.

The Bearcats held a 4-1 cushion heading into the top of the fifth inning before breaking out for seven runs to grab an easy victory on the road.

Lance Cleveland led the team with two hits and an RBI, while Owen Lovell, Cristian Martinez and Clay Krout each contributed a hit and an RBI apiece. Kolby Robinson tossed in two RBIs on a sacrifice fly and a groundout. Keaton Dean had a hit, too.

“It was a tight game there for awhile,” Bearcat coach Brent Patterson said. “We were able to capitalize on a few errors in the fifth inning and score some runs.”

Following their win, Patterson and Co. hopped on the bus and headed over to the Met to take on Overton in Game 2 on the day.

Branch Hill picked up right where Huser left off, throwing six innings of three-hit ball to earn the W. He walked three hitters and struck out six. Noah Holder tossed a scoreless seventh to close out the game.

Cole Collins was a perfect 3 for 3 at the plate with two RBIs, while Lovell and Auston Neal each had two hits and an RBI for the Bearcats.

Drake Hollingsworth notched a hit and two RBIs. Orvis Cuello was good for a hit and one RBI. Maison Goodwin, Robinson and Huser all had one single.

The Class 5A No. 3 Black and Gold improved to 20-8 on the season with the two wins.

“We want to pitch it and defend it every game,” Patterson said. “We didn’t do that in our past two games. Sometimes, the runs will come and sometimes they won’t. But we have absolutely got to do those two things to win. It was important for us to come out and get over that loss on Monday, and we did that. I’m proud of them.”

Cullman will play Pell City today at 2 p.m.

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