Mint Hill

Mint Hill's Brantley Smith picks off Caldwell County's Josh Murphy at first base after a throw from pitcher Brandon McWhirter. Photos by Tim Long (The Mint Hill Times)

Mint Hill is still alive. After falling behind 0-2 in a best-of-five Area IV playoff series against Caldwell County, Mint Hill has won the last two to push the series to a decisive game five tonight at Caldwell County.

Mint Hill got a little help from mother nature in Thursday’s win at Butler High School. After leading 7-3 in the fifth inning, a thunderstorm forced the game to be called after more than an hour delay.

Brandon McWhirter struck out five in getting the win for Mint Hill.

More photos after the break.

Mint Hill Post 4059 – 7, Caldwell County Post 29 – 3
(5 innings)
TOP SECOND INNING: Ethan Turner singles to left field. Josh Murphy sacrifices Turner to second.

The Mint Hill Times
Brandon McWhirter struck out five in five innings of work Thursday.

Austin Beard singles to left field, Turner to third. Turner scores as pitcher Brandon McWhirter commits a throwing error on a pickoff attempt at first base. Tyler Bumgarner singles to left field, Beard to second. Beard to third, Bumgarner to second on a wild pitch. Dylan Poarch strikes out. Max Linville pops up. Caldwell County 1, Mint Hill 0.
BOTTOM SECOND INNING: Tommy Hibbard doubles to left field. Ryan Hodge sacrifices Hibbard to third. Hibbard scores on Brantley Smith’s sacrifice fly. Caldwell County 1, Mint Hill 1.
BOTTOM THIRD INNING: Mario Labrador grounds out. Tyler Revell singles to third base. Chase Gehringer reaches on a throwing error by shortstop Max Linville, Revell to second. Carson Plyler doubles to left field, scoring Revell and Gehringer. Kyle Galloway strikes out. Plyler to third on pitcher Jake Watts’ error on an attempted pickoff, scores on a wild pitch. Hibbard walks. Hodge flies out.
Mint Hill 4, Caldwell County 1.
BOTTOM FOURTH INNING: Smith walks. Fowler singles to left field, Smith to second. Labrador sacrifices Smith to third, Fowler to second; on a throwing error by the pitcher Watts, Smith and Fowler score, Labrador to third; on a throwing error by second baseman Josh Murphy, Labrador scores. Revell strikes out. Gehringer grounds out. Plyler hit by a pitch. Galloway flies out. Mint Hill 7, Caldwell County 1.
TOP FIFTH INNING: Poarch singles to third base. Linville reaches on a fielder’s choice, with Poarch safe at second, then on to third on an error by the second baseman Plyler. Blake Johnson grounds out, Linville to second. Gray singles to center field, scoring Poarch and Linville. Bowman grounds out, Gray to third. Turner strikes out. Mint Hill 7, Caldwell County 3.

Mint Hill Times
Caldwell County coaches try to rally the team after falling behind against Mint Hill on Thursday.