Greene Central rams Whiteville to reach 2A championship series

Greene Central rams Whiteville to reach 2A championship series

Greene Central used a bombastic fifth and sixth inning to pull away from Whiteville and win the 2024 N.C. High School Athletic Association’s 2A East regional final series. It was a decisive 9-1 victory in a decisive game three on Friday night.

Greene Central will play in next week’s 2A state championship series against the game three winner of East Rutherford-Burns on Saturday. This will be the first state championship appearance for Greene Central since 2002. The Rams won state titles in 1972, 1980, 1987, 1990, and 2000.

Whiteville handed Greene Central its first – and so far, only – loss of the season in game one of the Eastern regional final series on Tuesday. The Wolfpack won that game 4-3.

After the loss, Greene Central managed to not be dismayed or have its season crumble at the first sight of real adversity. The Rams defeated Whiteville in a 4-0 shutout in Whiteville on Thursday to allow themselves to return to Snow Hill for the win-or-go-home on Friday.

Tonight, Greene Central used a star-making performance from sophomore Riley Radford, who dominated Whiteville’s lineup from the mound and blasted in four RBIs across his own plate appearances. The righty allowed just one hit to go with the lone run by the Wolfpack. He struck out five batters.

When Greene Central led by a 3-1 margin in the bottom of the fifth, Radford went deep to left field for a homer that scored fellow sophomore Will Radford and junior Easton Creech. The three-run shot essentially put the game out of reach as Whiteville seemed to be mentally defeated after the sudden change. In the sixth, Riley Radford smashed a deep double that scraped the left outfield wall and sent Creech home once again.

The Rams’ first run came in the bottom of the fourth when senior Noah Uzzell singled to send home freshman Mason Dillon. Whiteville’s lone run followed that in the top of the fifth when Wolfpack senior Ashton Hammonds scored after a bunt by senior Grayson Creech and a bad throw to first base by Greene Central.

Creech (two RBIs), Uzzell (one RBI), and Will Radford (one RBI) were also responsible for sending in runs for Greene Central. Senior East Carolina commit Braden Burress scored two runs and seniors Jordan Scott and Brady Anderson reached home once apiece. Early in the game, Burress made a horizontally leaping catch on a liner from his shortstop position that thwarted Whiteville from garnering early momentum with a big hit.

Greene Central improved to 27-1 on the season with the win. Whiteville ended its 2A East runner-up campaign with a 24-3 overall record.