By Ed Greif
The Cumberland County High School baseball team dropped their season opener to McMinn Central 3-1 Monday afternoon.
Matt Ledbetter suffered the loss, allowing three runs on three hits with two strikeouts and four walks, while Nathaniel Wyatt poked three hits. David Elliott and Ethan Cunningham smacked one hit each.
McMinn Central scored the first run of the game on a single by winning pitcher Will McInturf, a stolen base, an error and a groundout off Ledbetter.
Ledbetter allowed a walk in the second inning to Tony Guardiole who was later caught stealing on a throw from David Elliott to second baseman Grant Parrent.
Hunter Stokes reached on an error in the third, but was stranded.
Ledbetter gave up a walk and a single to Guardiole who was caught stealing again on a throw from Elliott to shortstop Ryan Burgess.
After retiring the side in order in the fifth, he allowed one run in the top of the sixth on a hit to McInturff, two groundouts and a steal of home by McInturff .
McMinn Central scored its final run in the seventh on a walk, two errors, a fielders choice and a groundout.
CCHS tied the game in the bottom of the second on a hitbatsman, singles by Wyatt and Ellott, a walk and a balk; however, both Wyatt and Drew Vaden, who walked, were both picked off, killing a potential big inning.
Ledbetter walked to lead off the bottom of the fourth, was balked to second, went to third on a passed ball, but was thrown out at home attempting to score on Reed Shaw's grounder. Parrent walked and Wyatt singled, but Parent was tagged out in a rundown between second and third.
Wyatt singled and stole second in the seventh inning.
CCHS hosted Upperman Tuesday, and will begin play in the Playing for a Cure Tournament Thursday afternoon at Walker Valley, play Polk County at McMinn Central Friday at 6:30 p.m. and two games Saturday at McMinn Central — Heritage at 3:30 p.m. and McMinn Central at 6 p.m.