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Baseball champion to be crowned Tuesday

Posted: May 25, 2015 - 10:21pm

Fittingly, the two best baseball teams in GHSA Class AAAAA have taken the season as far as it will go.
After falling 6-2 to Gainesville in Game 1 of the GHSA Class AAAAA state baseball championship series at Greenbrier, the Wolfpack rebounded to force a third and final game Tuesday, downing the Red Elephants, 7-3, in the nightcap.
"I think tomorrow we'll be ready to go," said Wolfpack (29-4) coach Jason Osborn. "It'll be a one-game shootout for both tomorrow and anything can happen in Game 3."
Game time is slated for 5 p.m.
After being stifled by Red Elephant's junior lefty Jonathan Gettys to the tune of two hits in Game 1, the Wolfpack rebounded to bang out nine hits against three Gainesville hurlers in Game 2. Justen Hartfield, Ty Snipes and Jon Dennany led the way with two hits apiece.
The Wolfpack needed a strong performance from Adam Sasser (6-1) after Gettys (12-2) had the Wolfpack's number from the get-go in Game 1. He struck out seven of the first eight batters and finished fanning 11. He gave up lone hits in the fifth and sixth innings and allowed two sixth-inning runs. In the sixth, the Wolfpack stranded three in their best opportunity of the day.
Wolfpack ace Nick Sandlin (11-2) had a weird afternoon as the usually pinpoint hurler hit seven batsmen and walked four while striking out seven. Of the six runs he allowed in the complete-game effort, only five were earned as the Wolfpack committed an uncharacteristic six errors.
Wolfpack coach Jason Osborn thought playing clean would be the key to Game 3.
"Just playing sound baseball," said Osborn. "We came out here in the first game and threw the ball around and we haven't done that all year long."
Sasser gave the Wolfpack a seven-inning effort of his own, allowing the three runs (one earned) on five hits with eight strikeouts and four walks.
"I wasn't going to let my season end like that, I was going to at least force a Game 3," said Sasser, adding the first game was kind of a wakeup call. "Gettys threw a really good game, but I knew the guys in the dugout didn't want to let the season end today."
The Wolfpack struck first in the fourth as Garrett Marchman singled home Snipes who singled leading off. Avery Smoak then brought home Sandlin with an RBI groundout.
Snipes would get the only extra-base-hit of the day in the fifth, tripling home Dennany who walked leading off and scored on a Sandlin sac fly.
Sasser faced trouble in the fifth with two on and no outs before striking out the next two batters. A walk loaded the bases but he induced a fielder's choice to get out of the jam.
"I thought he gave us a very gutsy performance tonight," said Osborn.
Dennany got the first of his two RBI in the sixth, singling home Davis Murray, who walked leading off the frame. After Hartfield singled home Murray in the seventh, Dennany brought in Smoak with a single.
The Red Elephants (29-7) got one back in the sixth and two unearned in the seventh.
Red Elephants coach Jeremy Kemp reminded his team how far they have come.
"I told them, if I told you a month ago you'd be playing in the state championship game, one game take all, we'd have taken it," said Kemp.

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Comments (1)

sheldcooperr0q

I think that baseball players

I think that baseball players has a lot of stamina, because of this they can play such intense game. - Stephen Samuelian