Monday night the Braves traveled to Bennettsville to take on the Marlboro County Bulldogs. Cheraw got strong pitching performances from seniors Joe Campbell and Jordan Mickleberry. Mickleberry started on the hill for the Braves and threw four innings allowing only two earned runs, and he struck-out five Bulldogs during his performance. Campbell came in and pitched the final four innings and held the Bulldogs to one earned run. He sat down eight Bulldogs by strikeouts during those four innings.
It was a back-and-forth-battle all game for the Braves. The Cheraw nine jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the third inning. Marlboro answered by scoring one run in the bottom of the third and then took the lead in the fourth inning on a two-run homer. Mickleberry stepped up big for the Braves and cranked a two-run homer in the fifth inning to boost the Braves back on top. The Bulldogs used a squeeze bunt to score the tying run in the sixth.
With the game tied up in the eighth inning the Braves had a dropped fly ball and an over-throw to allow Marlboro to take the victory.
“It is very disappointing to give up only two hits and strikeout 13 batters and still suffer a loss. We are making too many defensive errors and leaving to many runners on base. Our kids have to learn to compete at another level if we plan on being competitive,” Cheraw coach David Byrd said.
Cheraw took on Robert E. Lee in its final preseason tournament game. The Braves fell to the Cavilers, 4-3, despite receiving another strong pitching performance. Campbell got the start for the Braves and threw well. He struck out six Cavilers and scattered three hits and one run over five innings. Mickleberry finished the game off throwing the final two innings, allowing two earned runs and collecting two strikeouts for the Braves.
For more information on this story, please read the March 2, 2006 edition of the Cheraw Chronicle/Chesterfield Advertiser.