LEWISTON — Brian Wigant showed sufficient command of the strike zone on the mound and in the batter’s box to give Lewiston a 3-2 victory over Edward Little on Friday.

Wigant walked one in a seven-inning duel with Edward Little’s John Simpson, then took a 3-2 pitch inside for ball four to send home the winning run in the bottom of the eighth.

“He’d walked the last guy. I wanted to see if he could locate,” Wigant said. “He threw the first one up, so I just wanted to see if he’d throw me something in my ballpark.”

Wigant (two runs, one earned, seven hits, four strikeouts) and Simpson (two unearned runs, three hits, four strikeouts, two walks) were both tough to rattle in yet another nail-biter between the rivals. Each gave up a run in the third and a run in the fifth and both did well to snuff out the rallies before they snowballed into crooked numbers on the board.

Neither bullpen had the command of their starters. Alex Small stranded a pair of inherited runners who had walked in the top of the eighth. Nick Perreault drew a leadoff walk to start the winning rally against Sean Ford.

Wigant enjoyed just one clean inning, the sixth. But the Eddies let him off the hook, stranding nine.

“We’ve had two games now where we’ve left some men out there,” said EL coach Scott Annear, whose team opened the season Wednesday with a loss to Messalonskee. “We’ve got some young guys at the bottom of the order, so it’s good to see that they were starting to get a handle on it. But overall, we left enough people out there to choke a pig.”

“I knew guys were going to get hits. The big thing was just to battle and throw just my pitches,” Wigant said. “If they are going to get their hits, try to limit them by throwing outside, make them drive the ball the other way.”

Back-to-back singles by Mike Hammond and Simpson (3-for-4) and a grounder off the second baseman’s back-hand stab attempt sent Hammond home with the game’s first run.

An error and a sacrifice bunt set up Perreault’s RBI single to tie it. Simpson stranded the go-ahead run at second with one out.

“He was very economical with his pitches,” Annear said. “He gave us a shot. He didn’t walk many and made it tough for them to get good wood on the bat.”

Wigant’s only free pass, a leadoff walk to Hammond in the fifth, came back to haunt him. Ford’s two-out single to left put the Eddies ahead temporarily.

Gage Cote’s speed helped the Blue Devils get even in the bottom of the frame. The freshman shortstop reached on an infield hit, stole second, went to third on the catcher’s throwing error, then scored on Perreault’s ground out to second.

“We knew it was going to be a battle,” Lewiston coach Dave Jordan said. “Obviously, it’s fun to get a win in the rivalry. Today went our way. It could have gone either way.”


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