"He threw a heck of a game,'' Brumfield said of Kinker's performance. "I thought as the game went on he got stronger. His two-seamer was running very well. I was watching him warm up and it'd break at the last second 5 or 6 inches. I thought our kids did a good job of putting the ball in play and making [Woodrow Wilson] make mistakes.''
Midland, which had no one with multiple hits and only one extra-base hit, gave Kinker all the runs he would need in the second inning, scoring three runs.
Knights sophomore Aaron Elkins sent a run-scoring line-drive double down the right-field line on an 0-2 count, junior Taylor Kuhn singled in a run and freshman Colton Carter, who pinch ran for Elkins, scored on an error. The Knights added two runs in the third when sophomore Jeffery Jobe, who opened the inning getting hit by a pitch, scored on a wild pitch and junior Eric Wooten, the No. 9 hitter, singled in a run.
"We hit the ball in timely spots,'' said Kinker, whose only blemish was an 0-for-4 performance at the plate. "We've got a great team. We were live in the dugout. We have confidence. We've had confidence for a month and a half now. It was an all-around good effort. We're just having fun.''
After Halstead broke up the perfect game in the fifth he was quickly erased on a double play. Woodrow sophomore Brent Osborne tried to lay down a bunt on the first pitch he saw to lead off the fifth, but Kinker fielded it cleanly, gathered himself and made a on-target throw to first.
Greco, who started for No. 10 Woodrow (20-11), took the loss, allowing four runs (three earned) on four hits with two strikeouts and four walks. Junior Josh Rakes relieved in the third and surrendered just one earned run on two hits in the final 32/3 innings.
A state tourney berth didn't look like a certainty this year for Midland, which started the season with a 4-5 record that included four straight losses. The Knights have won five one-run decisions during their current winning streak.
"We just got together after a game and said, 'Guys, what do we have to lose?,''' Kinker said. We just kept playing and winning. We've earned it. We've had a lot of one-run games where we grinded it out. You couldn't ask for a better group of teammates.''
Reach Tommy R. Atkinson at tatkin...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-4811.