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WILLIAMSBURG – Warhill’s Michael Brumfield handcuffed Caroline on four hits, and Luke Patterson drove in four runs to give the Lions a 7-0 victory over the Cavaliers in a Region 1 playoff game.
It was Caroline’s first Region 1 playoff appearance since 2007, and the loss on Monday of this week brought the season to an end for the Cavaliers.
Brumfield started the game pitching fast, and his throws got faster as the game went on.
“That’s the way I always pitch,” he said. “I get faster as the game goes on.”
“We have seen pitchers that can pitch like this before, and we have adjusted to them,” said Caroline coach Frank Dow. “But this guy, we weren’t able to.”
Brumfield pitched seven innings, struck out 10, and gave up only one walk.
Patterson led all batters, hitting 3-4 with four RBIs and scoring two runs; he also had one of five stolen bases for Warhill. The Lions scored seven runs on 11 hits.
Caroline starting pitcher Joe Shiflett gave up four runs on eight hits in five innings; he struck out seven and walked five. Adam Desjarlais pitched the sixth inning and gave up three runs on three hits; he struck out four (one batter reached first when the catcher dropped the third strike pitch) and walked two.
“That lefty (referring to Shiflett) was the most deliberate pitcher we have seen all year,” remarked Warhill coach Joe Henzel. “He kept our running game down.” The Cavaliers forced Warhill to strand 18 runners on base.
Shiflett was 1-3 with a double to lead the Cavaliers at the plate.
Warhill started to pull away in the bottom of the fifth inning, scoring two more runs to take a 4-0 lead.
Caroline had an opportunity to get back into the game in the top of the sixth with two runners in scoring position and one out. Warfield’s right fielder caught a fly ball, and the Lions threw out a Caroline runner who was off base.
“I thought we had a chance to get back in the game in the sixth inning with two players in scoring position,” said Dow. “We have done it against teams like Culpeper, where we came back late and won.”
Caroline ended the regular season 11-3 in the Battlefield District and 14-6 overall.
Dow was upbeat despite the loss. “We are glad to be in the midst of the playoffs and look forward to being back next year,” he said. “We have the caliber of players to be back. We are sad to lose today but we are excited about the future.”