One might say the East Lincoln Mustangs put the icing on the cake Thursday night. Having clinched the South Fork Conference title with a win at Newton-Conover Wednesday, East moved the final regular season game up from Friday to Thursday night.
The Mustangs gave up eight runs over the first two innings, one in the first and seven more in the top of the second. They scored a solo run in the bottom of the second, then added five in the fourth, one in the fifth and three in the sixth while holding the Red Devils scoreless over the last five innings for a 10-8 victory that improved their record to 13-1.
Starting pitcher Ben Kleckner exited in that second inning after giving up seven runs. Logan Palmer gave up one more before retiring the side, then pitched the next three. Sophomore sensation Isaac Armstrong threw only 21 pitches over the last two innings, striking out three while holding the visitors hitless. Since the Mustangs were still behind 8-7 when he took the mound, he gets credit for the win.
He got East Lincoln's first run with a second inning homer, and went 2 for 2 for the night, scoring two runs and batting in three. Gavin Houser was 3 for 4 and scored two runs and Logan Craig was 2 for 3 with an RBI.
East will be in the NCHSAA 2A playoffs next week. The brackets and schedule will be announced over the weekend.