RACHEL —For the first time since North Marion High School opened its doors in 1979, the Huskies are going to Charleston for the state baseball tournament.

North Marion defeated the Frankfort Falcons 9-1 Wednesday and won the Class AA Region 1 championship on the back of a fortuitous first inning and a sterling performance from pitcher Jace Rinehart.

Rinehart struck out four while pitching a complete game, allowing only two hits while collecting two RBI's and a run of his own on a 3-for-3 day where he was also hit by a pitch.

The Huskies got ahead 3-0 after one inning after a walk, a single, and a HBP loaded the bases. Center fielder Cruz Tobin would hit into a fielder's choice before Brock Troy would bring in one with a single to centerfield. Then, a bad throw on a play at the plate after a Mike Harris fly out would score two more.

The Huskies would not look back from there, extending their lead to seven by the end of four and nine by the end of five, with Frankfort's lone run occurring in the top of the sixth as the Falcon's Andrew Lynch belted a solo home run over the left field fence.

In a best-of-three, North Marion took the series 2-0 after winning the first contest Tuesday 6-to-4.

"I'm so proud of [the players]," Huskies Head Coach Vic Seccuro said after the game. "The whole season they worked so hard, the coaches worked hard. This game today, they were so focused, it's all they talked about, and I'm so proud of them."

Reach Nick Henthorn at (304) 367-254 or by email at nhenthorn@timeswv.com.

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