After the Lakeside Panthers went to Harlem and beat the Bulldogs 13-1 on March 3, Harlem made the trip to Lakeside on Wednesday night in hopes of returning the favor.
Three innings into the ball game, Harlem had an 8-0 lead. Bulldog outfielder Eric Schnitzler sparked the offense with his second home run in as many games. Lakeside, which had lost its last four games, was on the ropes again.
"When you spot a team that many runs you dig yourselves into a big hole," Lakeside coach Jay Matthews said.
Fortunately for Matthews, the Panthers brought their shovels.
Harlem took its eight-run lead all the way into the bottom of the fourth, but Lakeside dug its way out with four runs in the inning, including a two-RBI single from junior Matt Zelgewicz.
As Lakeside continued its comeback, Harlem gave the Panthers a boost with five Bulldog errors in the fourth and fifth innings. After Lakeside cut the lead in half in the fourth, the Panthers added seven runs in the fifth for an 11-8 lead.
The seven runs came on three errors, four walks and only two hits.
"Thank God this is Lakeside and not (region opponent) Richmond Academy," Harlem coach Jimmie Lewis said. "We should have won this ball game. We played terrible defense."
Lakeside relief pitcher Paul Bordon shut out the Bulldogs in the final two innings to seal the 11-8 victory. Bordon was one of four Panthers pitchers who took the mound Wednesday night.
"We had a game plan tonight to throw four pitchers," Matthews said. "We didn't get to throw them in the order we planned, but we still got it done. We're still trying to establish a No. 3 man."
The win improved Lakeside to 7-5 on the year while Harlem fell to 6-6.
At Richmond Academy, the Greenbrier Wolfpack held their early lead and kept their season-long undefeated streak alive with an 18-1 win over ARC.
The game ended after only four innings, but not before four Wolfpack players hit home runs.
Senior Rich Poythress led the charge with two home runs, while Christopher Johnson, Tim Thornhill and Nolan Belcher also went deep.
The win was Greenbrier's fifth under the mercy rule this year and lifted the team's record to 10-0 on the season.
Evans split a pair of non-region games last week with a 5-2 win over Westside on Monday and a 4-1 loss to Burke County on Wednesday.
Junior Kyle Golden went 6q strong innings for the win over Westside, but the Knights lost their bats on Wednesday and produced only one run on five hits in the loss. Evans entered the weekend with an overall record of 8-5.
Augusta Christian earned back-to-back wins on Monday and Tuesday. The Lions forced the mercy rule on Strom Thurmond for the second time this season with an 11-1 win, then defeated Briarwood Academy 10-8.
Augusta Christian second baseman Trey Crabill provided plenty of Lion offense with three home runs in the game and four RBI.
The win put the Lions at 10-1 on the year.
Also in baseball action, Augusta Prep earned a 15-0 win over John Hancock Academy on March 25 but fell to John Milledge Academy on Tuesday by a final score of 16-0.
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