Holcomb's Dustin Houart (left) throws out Campbell's Austin Vincent (right).
The Hornets and Camels combined for just five hits in the seven-inning contest.
Houart collected a two-out two-RBI double in the top of the fifth inning with the bases loaded to break a 0-0 tie. The game-winning hit accounted for the only runs scored and propelled Holcomb to a 2-0 win against Campbell.
"It was a good, clean baseball game," Holcomb coach Matt Casper said. "The defense and pitching was good on both sides. When you have a game like this you always want to get down on your hitting, which we want to improve on. However, we are glad to come out on top in a close game today."
Both starting pitchers pitched six innings.
"Lance gave us six good innings," Campbell coach Jeff Boner said. "He had a rough time there in the fifth when he hit two batters and walked one. That came back to haunt us in the fifth."
Holcomb stranded the bases loaded in the first inning after three of its first four hitters reached base to start the game. Dell escaped trouble in the fourth frame when he pitched around a leadoff double by Houart without allowing a run.
Holcomb loaded the bases again in the fifth inning when Hunter Swafford and Lance Ruff were hit by pitches and Cameron Clark drew a walk. Houart's run-scoring double later in the frame proved to be Holcomb's only hit in the top of the fifth.
"I just had to stay back and hit the ball," Houart said of his fifth-inning at-bat. "Everybody's got to start hitting the ball better. We've got to start executing better. We left a lot of runners on base. We've got to execute better than we did today."
Houart flirted with a no-hitter on the mound. Campbell's Camden Bryant tallied the Camels' only hit of the contest when he drove a ground ball through the second base gap with two outs in the bottom of the fourth.
"Not a great deal of offense today," Boner said. "We've improved, however. Holcomb has been beating us 10-3 or 11-4 so to play them close with a young team is encouraging."
Campbell found a way to get runners on base despite Houart's one-hit performance on the mound. Campbell had at least one hitter reach base in every inning with the exception of the first and sixth inning.
The Camels threatened to tie the game in the bottom of the seventh after Bryant and Dell drew back-to-back walks with nobody out to start the bottom of the seventh.
Casper brought Clark into the game after the back-to-back free passes. Clark struck out the first two hitters he faced and got the third batter he faced to ground out on the infield. Clark, who closed the door on Risco Monday, picked up his second save in 48 hours on the mound.
"He has pitched real well all season," Casper said of Clark. "He bailed us out today in the seventh."
Houart was credited with a win on the mound. He allowed one hit, struck out six and walked four.
"I didn't throw great, but it wasn't bad I guess," Houart said. "I could have thrown more strikes, especially late.
"Cameron pulled me out of a big jam in the end," Houart continued. "We didn't have any outs and they had two runners on base. He came in and threw strikes."
"He threw real well and had command of the zone until the end," Casper added. "He got ground balls and did what he was asked to do today."
Matt Campbell pitched a scoreless top of the seventh for Campbell. Dell struck out six.
Campbell's game against Neelyville on Thursday has been canceled. Campbell will host an 8-team tournament on Saturday. A bracket for the tournament is available at this link: Bracket
Holcomb (9-3) will host Southland (3-4) Thursday. Holcomb begins play in the Fall Baseball Classic next week. The Hornets are the defending champion of the tournament.
"We are looking forward to Southland," Casper said. "I don't think they graduated many players off of last year's team so we are looking for them to put the ball in play and do things right. Hopefully, playing Southland will help prepare us for the tournament next week. If everything goes well hopefully we can defend our title."
Holcomb 2, Campbell 0
HHS 000 020 0 - 2 4 1
CHS 000 000 0 - 0 1 1
WP - Dustin Houart. LP - Lance Dell. SV - Cameron Clark. 2B - Dustin Houart (2). Multiple hits - Holcomb: Houart 2-3.