SPARTANBURG -- There is something about odd-numbered years that Bishop England likes.
The Battling Bishops entered Game 1 of the Class AA state championship baseball series at Broome having won previous titles in 2003, '05, '07 and '09.
Bishop England took one step closer to continuing the trend with a 12-5 victory against the Centurions. It can clinch another state championship with a home win on Wednesday.
"It's pretty unique," Bishops coach Bill Collier said, who picked up his 99th career win with the victory. "We've had just as good teams in 2010 and '08. It's a big game on Wednesday, and we may still have to go get one on Friday. Broome has a good team."
Bishop England took a quick 2-0 lead in the top of the first inning on a Jimmy Lindberg home run. However, Broome (21-9) answered in the bottom of the frame as John-Gavin Jones lifted a solo shot on the first pitch of the at-bat.
The Centurions rallied for a 3-2 lead in the second as Jones recorded an RBI single and Nick Crocker walked with the bases loaded.
The Bishops responded with three in the fourth on an error, wild pitch and RBI single from Morgan Bastian for a 5-3 advantage.
Broome answered once again to tie the game at 5-5 as Crocker scored on a delayed steal and Cody Arthur ripped a run-scoring single.
The decisive blow, though, came in the top of the fifth as Bishop England plated five runs. Cameron Garrett, Fernando Pinillos and Bastian each had RBI singles, while Alexander Knowlton recorded an RBI sacrifice fly.
The other run scored on a wild pitch.
Bastian finished the game 3-for-4 with a walk, two RBIs, run scored and stolen base.
"We wanted to shut the door and not give them any life," Bastian said. "This was big to win on the road. Now we can go back home and will be much more relaxed in front of our fans, family and friends."
Lindberg, who will get the nod on the mound in Game 2, belted his second homer of the game, followed by Andrew Kinard scoring on a wild pitch to add insurance in the sixth.
Lindberg was 3-for-5 with the pair of home runs, three RBIs and two runs scored.
"I kept telling the dugout we had to keep the pressure on them and not us," Lindberg said. "We'll be more relaxed on our field. "
I got to pitch the state game when we clinched against Chesnee (in 2009) and get to do it again. To have that chance again in front of the home crowd is a dream."
"Broome really helped us out tonight with a couple of bad throws," Collier said. "But, we know they are a better ballclub than that. We feel like we were opportunistic."
Pinillos picked up the win in relief of starting pitcher Shawn Singleton, tossing four innings and giving up two runs on three hits with a pair of strikeouts.
"Their crowd was really in it early, but once we got the lead a little bit I got more relaxed," Pinillos said, who entered the game in the third inning. "It makes it that way when you have your guys hitting the way they were tonight."
Jones led the Centurions finishing 3-for-4 with a homer and two RBIs. Corey Bennett and Arthur each was 2-for-3.
"After all the passed balls and errors, it just got worse for us," Jones said. "I felt like we had a lot of momentum after we tied it but couldn't pull through. We just have to fight back as hard as we can on Wednesday."
"They didn't give away a trophy tonight. It's not over yet," Broome coach J.D. Goodwin said. "We have to come out on Wednesday ready to play and take it one game at a time."