Rain and split series left much to be resolved after just one day of play in the Region 2-AAAAA baseball tournament.
Opening Thursday night, just one of four series was resolved after subregion 2B’s No. 1 seed, Houston County High School, swept 2A’s No. 4 Grovetown, 14-1, 4-1. Evans, Greenbrier and Lakeside split with their opponents and were scheduled to resume their series’ on Monday.
In similar fashion, Lakeside, Evans and Greenbrier each won the first game of their series before dropping the second. At home, No. 2 Lakeside beat No. 3 Warner Robins 7-5 then lost 6-5. On the road, No. 3 Evans beat No. 2 Jones County 5-4 before being blanked 6-0.
At Greenbrier, the No. 1 Wolfpack took care of No. 4 Northside, Warner Robins 13-3 in five innings in Game 1 before having the tables turned on them, losing 14-4 in five innings in Game 2.
Winners of the third game in the best of three series will advance to Tuesday’s semifinals and automatically earn a berth in the Georgia High School Association Class AAAAA state baseball tournament.
At Greenbrier, both games had a similar feel to them. Three Eagles pitchers combined to walk eight batters as the Wolfpack scored in each of the five innings in their win. Osborn had to use three pitchers in the second inning in Game 2 as the Eagles sent 14 men to the plate, scoring 10 runs on just two hits with seven walks, a hit-batsmen and a wild pitch. Wolfpack pitchers would combine for 11 walks.
“Not to take anything away from them, but we didn’t play very good ball tonight,” said Wolfpack head coach Jason Osborn. “We made a lot of errors and that’s very uncharacteristic of our team. Our strength this whole year’s been pitching and defense, and we didn’t do either one of those well at all tonight.”
Nick Sandlin (7-0) earned the Wolfpack’s win. He went four innings and got out of jams throughout, some of his making and some of his teammates’, who committed five errors. He allowed the three runs (one earned) on two hits with seven strikeouts, three walks and two hit-batsmen.
The Wolfpack’s Braz Staples and Ty Snipes each had two hits in three trips to the plate, with Snipes doubling and launching a home run over the fence in left-center in the third inning.
Connor Hogan (6-1) took the Wolfpack’s loss, lasting just an inning as he walked the first five batters and gave up a single to start the second inning.
Hard throwing righty Jason Gifford (2-4) gave the Eagles the effort they needed, shutting down the Wolfpack on seven hits without a walk.