Published: Jul 17, 2011 07:42 AM
Modified: Jul 17, 2011 08:44 PM
PITTSBORO - More rain might have been the only thing that could have stopped Cary Post 67.
On a muggy night in North Chatham, when nasty thunderstorms struck here and there around the county, only a few drops fell at Northwood High School.
Hits, on the other hand, were plentiful.
Cary rained 13 hits on North Chatham -- including a grand slam by Jonathan Grudee -- on the way to a 13-2 win Wednesday and the program's third straight title in the American Legion baseball's Area 1 West.
Wednesday's win was Cary's most decisive in a three-game sweep of the best-of-five series, allowing the team a few days to rest before tonight's game against Wayne County Post 11.
Wayne County and Cary, who will meet at Mount Olive College at 7 p.m., have each already claimed a spot in the state tournament representing Area I on Thursday. Tonight's game is for who will have the higher seed of the two seeds.
Blair Betts pitched for a 10-5 win in game one, and Max Povse picked up the 14-12 win in game two. Both times, Cary's hitters provided tremendous run support.
In game two, when North Chatham pounded out eight homers, all of them for one run, Cary answered with Betts going 5-for-5 with a homer and two doubles; Matt Daum batted 2-for-5 with three RBIs, and Nick Addona went 3-for-5 with a double for two RBIs.
Tuesday night's loss may have taken something out of North Chatham, or perhaps it energized Cary.
In either case, Cary came out swinging Wednesday night.
A light rain the sixth threatened to truncate what would have been an official game where Cary led 6-0. Some North Chatham fans might have wished for more raindrops after Grudee came to the plate in the seventh.
With Addona, Anthony Colantino and David Hamm on base, Grudee jumped on a fastball coming over the middle of the plate and sent it 345 feet over the left field fence.
Glad to have some time off between series, Pistacchio said finishing among the top four last year just whetted Cary's appetite.
"A bunch of the older players talked about it after last season," said Pistacchio, one of several Cary players who could have played in collegiate summer leagues instead of Legion ball. "We all wanted another shot this summer. We all decided to come back and make another run at it."