BY GENE NARDI
The Royal Palm Beach High School baseball team hosted the Oxbridge Academy for senior night Friday, April 8 and handled the Thunderwolves 5-3 in front of a capacity crowd.
The game rolled into action with the Wildcats collecting two runs in the first inning, and they never trailed through the remainder. In the bottom of the second inning, Royal Palm Beach (9-13) added to its tally when Sean Houck batted in another run with a single to extend the lead to 3-1.
Solid defensive play through to the fourth inning by the Wildcats made it difficult for the Thunderwolves to connect with the ball to cut into the margin. In the bottom of the fourth, Troy Hamilton had an RBI single to send in another run, which gave Royal Palm Beach a 4-1 advantage. Houck was solid on defense at shortstop for the Wildcats throughout the game.
In the top of the fifth inning, Oxbridge was able to load the bases and close the gap to 4-3, but the assault stopped there, with Royal Palm Beach stepping up its defensive play to hold on to the one-run lead.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, C.J. Sothen had an RBI to extend the Wildcats’ lead to 5-3. Oxbridge had one chance to rally in the top of the seventh inning, but a stubborn Royal Palm Beach defense denied the Thunderwolves.
The Wildcats used three pitchers through the night’s game to grab the 5-3 senior night victory; Logan Pittman started the game, and Delio Fuertes and Zachary Retzler closed out the last innings.
C.J. Sothen was three for four with a run scored and an RBI for Royal Palm Beach. Nicholas Toney also tripled and and had an RBI for the Wildcats.
Royal Palm is 9-13 on the season. The Wildcats had games against Palm Beach Lakes, Palm Beach Central and Oxbridge this week, but results were not available by press time.
ABOVE: Royal Palm Beach pitcher Logan Pittman winds up and delivers.