DALE – Dylan Lang cranked out a grand slam in the top of the seventh to put the cap on Dale's scoring in an 11-1 Regional Championship win over Konawa Friday to secure a spot at the State Tournament.
Lang scored two runs in the contest with four RBIs, including a solo shot to left in the fifth for his first homer of the game.
“He's been swinging it pretty well this year,” coach Jerry Sanford said.
The Pirates kicked off the game with back-to-back singles from Hunter Sanford and Gant Hathcock to get the bats going early. Blake McQuain singled to center to bring around Sanford and Hathcock scored on a Jake Bigham single.
McQuain nearly followed up Lang's solo in the fifth with a homer of his own but the ball dropped just low enough to hit the top of the wall, leaving him to settle for a double. The hit was eerily reminiscent of a grand slam that he almost had the day before in a 15-8 win over Konawa.
“He's hit a couple off the wall,” coach Sanford said. “He doesn't have near enough lead in his pencil yet, but hopefully he will one of these days.”
Logan Carter was pulled from the mound early in Thursday's game so he was able to be utilized for Friday's game. The payoff came out as planned.
Carter pitched the complete game and whiffed 11 batters while walking one and allowing four hits.
“To go to the State Tournament gotta play good. We pitched it really well and hit it really well,” coach Sanford said.
The one run given up was the end result of an error that should have been the second out of the third but instead resulted in a baserunner at first. Carter balked to get the runner in scoring position and a single to center scored him. In a closer game that could have been devastating.
“We can't have those kinds of things in a tight game. In tight games that'll bite you in the butt,” coach Sanford said.
Lang and McQuain led the Pirates with three hits in four attempts each. Sanford, Hathcock, Carter and Maddux Betterton each had two hits and Cooper Hunt scored twice as a pinch runner.
Dale will host their final home game of the season Monday against Tuttle at 4:30 for Senior Night.