LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
North Laurel’s season best four-game winning streak came to an end Tuesday with an 8-1 loss to Madison Central.
“We (made errors) and they were stealing bases and nothing we could do about it. One of those games,” North Laurel coach Darren McWhorter said.
Madison Central improved to 16-5 and boasts the best record in the loaded 11th Region. They have faced three 13th Region teams in Middlesboro, Harlan County, and now North Laurel. Madison Central won all three games by a combined score of 27-3.
Zach Hurley took the loss for North Laurel. Dylan Messer and Chris Benge threw in relief. It was the second loss of the season for Hurley, who dropped a 3-1 game to South Laurel earlier in the year. Hurley had been out of the rotation with an injury.
“He’s had a pulled muscle in his back under the shoulder blade and hasn’t been throwing much at all. He is healed, but couldn’t find his release point,” McWhorter said.
Madison Central struck quickly with a pair of runs in the first inning. Seth Richardson drew a one-out walk and Hunter Kabalan followed with a single. One run scored on an error and a second run on a single by Austin Alexander.
North Laurel would get one run back in the bottom of the first inning. Ethan Maxey was hit by a pitch to lead off the game. Cole Lewis bunted Maxey to second and he scored on a single by Hurley. The only other hits for North Laurel would come on a second inning single by Byron Rice and a fifth inning single for Hunter North.
Madison Central starter Trey Sexton struck out five in tossing the three-hitter. North Laurel had just one runner advance past first base after the first inning.
A leadoff walk to Kabalan led to another run Madison Central run in the third inning.
Madison Central started to pull away with a four-run fourth inning. All four runs were unearned as the Jaguars committed four errors.
North Laurel was scheduled to play at Bell County Thursday and at Bryan Station tonight. They stay on the road Saturday at Lincoln County.