Hudson Rue, a freshman from Glassboro, was initially attending Pitman and had a rare opportunity to learn about his former hometown friends and earn some bragging rights.
Rue started the game at his third base, but made his most contribution on the mound as Pitman defeated Glassboro 6-4 in an interdivisional Tri-County Conference game before a large Friday night crowd at Pitman's Alcyon Park.
4/15 - 6:00 PM Baseball Final 4 6
|4/15 - 6:00 PM Baseball||Final|
|4/15 - 6:00 PM Baseball||Final|
The winning Panthers fought back from Thursday's 4-2 loss to St. Joseph, bringing Glassboro to a new level, set by Glassboro, who has now won 0-4, a false record for a team that has been in three of those four games.
Rue benefited from starter Dion D'Amico with runners on first and second, and one out in the fifth inning, after Glassboro senior Eric Fowler tied the score at 3-3 with a two-run single.
Rue, a freshman righthander, allowed an RBI double to the first batter he faced, and Gavin Dillard, a Glassboro freshman, gave the Bulldogs a 4-3 advantage.
D'Amico and Rue would then close the door and earn the victory with two 2/3 scoreless innings.
I came from Glassboro, and up until this year I was going to school in Glassboro, so getting a chance to throw against them was amazing, Rue said. Im so glad I got to throw against my friends, and it's a crazy game and fantastic atmosphere.
Fowler of Glassboro threw the first four innings, leaving the Bulldogs with a 4-3 lead after scoring three goals in the final seconds.
Pitman scored three runs in the sixth inning against Dillard.
D'Amico, who was freed from Rue's absence in the game, tied the score with a major sacrifice fly to the center.
The fifth run of the season came on a balk and catcher Aiden Ewe was knocked in an insurance run with a bloop single over a drawn-in infield.
Glassboro was adamantly absent from the game, but the Bulldogs have followed a similar set in the early part of the season.
The only game Glassboro hasn't been in was a 14-4 loss to the Gloucester County Institute of Technology. Glassboro has also lost to Overbrook, 4-1, and Woodstown, 7-5.
"We've played really well in three of our four games, and we're just running against really good teams," said Glassboro's coach.
Although he does not relish the loss, Brown might appreciate his work and the atmosphere between these two nearby Gloucester County schools.
"This was a great game, with two well-known teams working together," Brown said.
It was back and forth.
Pitman clinches a 3-0 lead with three runs on an RBI single by Connor Sharkey, and bases loaded walks to Billy Keehn and Brayden Sharkey.
Glassboro took the lead in the fifth with three runs in the third.
Then Pitman, who is one of the few to compete in South Jersey Group 1, came back to cheer.
Rue's knowledge of the opponent played a key role in the victory, according to coach John Hopely.
"He grew up with all of those guys, he had it filed in his memory bank, and knew of the weaknesses and weaknesses of the hitters, and I am certain it was an advantage to him," Hopely said.
Hopely felt adamant to defeat a Glassboro team that looks like it can provide plenty of teams that are fit.
"These guys (Glassboro), they are a fantastic team, and Dan has those guys playing."
It was not just coach-speak. Glassboro should eventually break the win column, and sooner rather than later, while Pitman, based on its early season performance, should continue to increase its win total.
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