Lakeside pitcher Hunter Hubbard was the difference-maker Friday night when the Panthers traveled to Evans for both squad’s Region 2-AAAAA baseball opener.
Hubbard kept the Knights off-balance all night, bringing the heat to start the game then relying more on curveballs in the later innings, allowing just two hits while striking out eight as the Panthers won 4-1.
Hubbard (1-1) faced two bases-loaded jams in the last three innings and escaped unscathed.
He got Matt Anderson looking at a curveball on the outside corner to end the fifth inning, then after two errors helped load the bases in the seventh, he blew a fastball past Anderson for the final out.
“When he has all of his pitches working he’s a tough pitcher,” Panthers coach Jay Matthews said.
“To be able to throw a curveball in that situation for a strike, it just shows the command he had tonight and that was a huge pitch for us,” Matthews said of the final out in the
The Panthers (6-1) scored twice in the first inning on a wild pitch and a bases-loaded walk by Knights starter Tyler Roberts (1-1) and added a run in the fourth on a wild pitch before Chandler Corley singled in Tanner Brassell in the top of the seventh.
Corley and Tyler Williams got two hits apiece, accounting for the team’s total.
Jeremy Clements and RaeKwon Bennett doubled to start second inning for the Knights (5-1), but that would be all they could muster.