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Lakeside beats Grovetown with late-game heroics

Posted: February 21, 2012 - 11:13pm  |  Updated: February 22, 2012 - 10:44am
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Grovetown's Cameron Busby dives back to second base in front of Lakeside first baseman Hunter Banks after Lakeside's pickoff attempt fails. Lakeside posted a 7-6 come-from-behind victory.  Photo by Jim Blaylock
Photo by Jim Blaylock
Grovetown's Cameron Busby dives back to second base in front of Lakeside first baseman Hunter Banks after Lakeside's pickoff attempt fails. Lakeside posted a 7-6 come-from-behind victory.

After trailing much of the game, and down three in the bottom of the seventh inning, the Lakeside Panthers refused to give up in their baseball home- and season-opener against Grovetown on Tuesday.

The Panthers worked their way onto the bases in the final stanza with walks, hits and a Warriors error to orchestrate a 7-6 come-from-behind victory.

With no outs, the bases loaded and still clinging to a 6-5 lead, Warriors pitcher Garrett Haskins almost worked out of the jam with consecutive strikeouts, but he surrendered a walk to pinch-hitter David Endredi to tie the score. Then, Lane Wallace also walked to bring in the game-winning run.

“The kids showed a lot of heart and battled to the end,” said Panthers head coach Jay Matthews. “I almost feel guilty winning with a walk, but we’ll take it any way we can get it.”

Haskins (0-1), who went the entire way for the Warriors, was most undone by control issues as four of his eight walks came in the bottom of the seventh. He finished with six strikeouts, five wild pitches and three hit-batsmen as the Warriors record evened at 1-1.

Despite his control issues, Warriors head coach Mike Jones wasn’t about to take out his senior hurler with a big lead.

“We were in the seventh inning up three and watching his pitch count,” Jones said. “We wanted to see what he could do.”

Sophomore Evan Krenz (1-0) pitched the final inning for the Panthers and got the win.

It didn’t look like any late-game heroics would be in store as the Warriors jumped out to a 4-0 lead after Cody McAllister’s two-run single in the bottom of the third.

Tanner Brassel’s two-run single in the fifth cut the lead to 4-3, but the Warriors added single runs in the sixth and seventh innings off freshman Peyton Jones and Krenz, respectively. The underclassmen took over after junior Hunter Hubbard went five innings, giving up five hits and four runs.

Even while trailing 4-3 heading into the sixth, Matthews had no trepidation handing the ball to the freshman lefty Jones and subsequently Krenz.

“We have no wins at the varsity level from anyone on the pitching staff,” Matthews said. “We have five or six guys we’re going to run out all season. Tonight they went out and battled and gave us an opportunity at the end.”

Tanner Durand paced the Panthers, going 3 for 4 with an RBI while Zach Hornsby was 2 for 3 and scored twice.

For the Warriors, Phillip Dukes was 2 for 2 with two runs scored and an RBI. Ryan Beasley was 2 for 4 and Cameron Busby scored twice.

OTHER GAMES

• In Monday’s season-opener, Harlem downed traditional rival Evans 7-2. Garrett Wilkinson took the loss for the Knights, who were held to one hit. Harlem then beat Aquinas 6-2 Wednesday night to go 2-0. Bryson Serigney (1-0) went six innings for the win. Trey Price, Aaron Hintz and Logan May went 2 for 4, while Dalton Green was 3 for 4 with two RBI. On Thursday, Harlem beat Lakeside 5-3, and was scheduled to face its final in-county rival, Greenbrier, on Friday.

• Grovetown got its season off to a good start Monday with a 10-1 win over Washington-Wilkes. Hunter McBride pitched six innings for the win. Ryan Beasley went 3 for 4 with four RBI, including a home run. Grovetown then lost to Greenbrier in its opener, 12-0.

• After its opening loss to Harlem, Evans evened its record at 1-1 with a 3-2 win at Thomson. Kyle Anderson got the win for the Knights and was helped by Jordan Rice, who went 2 for 3, and Jeremy Clements, who went 2 or 3.

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Comments (1)

GTWN404

Really?

Here is how to be the worst head baseball coach in the region:

1. Alienate your players!
2. Make horrible game decisions, blame the players!
3. Be a robot and don't pay attention to the game.
4. Blame the players.
5. Pitch a GREAT pitcher 140 pitches his first outing!!!! Tell the paper "we were watching the pitch count"
6. Blame the players.
7. Reverse 4 thru 9 in your roster.
8. Over train 3 hours before a game and make sure they are exhausted.
9. Tell everyone "you don't have the talent"
10. When all else fails....BLAME THE PLAYERS!!!!!!!
Have NO character or integrity.
and for this, we thank you!!!

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