Four years ago, a group of then freshmen told Uwharrie Charter Academy varsity baseball coach Van Hurley they were there to win a state championship.
On Saturday at Five County Stadium, those freshmen, now seniors, delivered on their promise.
Senior Spencer Lanier led the Eagles to the NCHSAA state 1-A championship with a 10-2 victory over Rosewood in Game 2 of the best-of-three state title series. UCA, the 10th seed, set up the sweep with a 6-4 win over Rosewood in Game 1 earlier in the day.
The victories give UCA a final record of 26-5, while No. 2 seeded Rosewood ends the year 23-6.
Mason Little threw a one-hitter in Game 2 to clinch the series for the Eagles. He walked three and struck out five. He pitched five hitless innings before giving up a hit in the sixth. Little faced more than four batters in an inning just once in earning the victory.
Lanier had four hits in the first game and two more in the second game as the baseball team joins the UCA wrestling team in taking home state championships. Lanier had five RBIs and scored four runs in the two games.
After the win in Game 1, the Eagles spotted Rosewood a run in the third inning of Game 2, but the UCA bats responded with two runs in the third and seven in the fourth ining for a 9-1 lead.
Lanier had a two-run single in the third, which gave the Eagles the lead for good, and UCA recorded seven hits in the fourth, including an RBI hit from Colt Wilkins, a two-run hit from Colby Hammer and RBI hits from Lanier, Jonathan Weaver and Braylon Hayes.
UCA came close to ending the game in five innings.
UCA recorded 12 hits in the contest with Wilkins getting three, Hayes three, Lanier two and Hunter Hill two.
The opener resumed in the bottom of the second inning Saturday morning with UCA holding a 2-0 lead. Rosewood recorded its first two hits, the second an RBI double by Patrick Jones to cut the UCA lead to 2-1.
Rosewood then took the lead with a pair of runs on three hits in the third, but UCA regained
the lead with a two-run fifth. Lanier tripled and he scored on a wild pitch. Braylen Hayes doubled in Jonathan Weaver, who had reached on a fielder’s choice.
Rosewood threatened a couple of times, but Hamlet recorded some key strikeouts, including one that stranded runners on second and third in the sixth.
Hamlet made that one-run lead stand up until he gave the team some needed breathing room with a two-run homer in the seventh inning,
Rosewood managed to make things interesting in the bottom of the seventh with a leadoff double by Logan Price. Price came home on an error and Rosewood put the tying runs on base before Hamlet induced a fly ball to end the contest.
Hamlet went the distance for Uwharrie Charter on the mound, allowing four runs, three earned, while scattering eight hits and three walks in the outing. He struck out 11 to pick up the complete game win.
Tanner McKeel was tagged with the loss for Rosewood, giving up four runs, three earned, while he allowed eight hits, five walks while striking out seven in his six innings of work.
Lanier, who is headed to Louisburg, was named the state 1-A championship series most valuable player.