With second place of Region 3-A on the line Saturday night in Portal, senior Brandon Mock took the hill for the Panthers and knew it was time to shut down the rival Bulldogs of Emanuel County Institute. Mission accomplished.
Mock struck out 14 batters and allowed just three runs as PHS won 8-3, securing a home game in the upcoming region playoffs.
“I just kept telling myself over and over coming back to the dugout, ‘This could be my last game here at Portal.’ I wasn’t going to settle for that,” said Mock. “I was going to come out, give it everything I had and leave it all on the field. That’s what I did.”
The senior, who also quarterbacked the football Panthers in 2006, allowed a two-run homer in the first inning to ECI, but was virtually unhittable from then on.
Mock is also on fire at the plate, batting a cool .431 while driving in 25 runs and belting three home runs. His pitching record stands at 7-3 this season.
Gilbert performs at region meet
Work hard, be humble and good things will happen.
That’s how Bulloch Academy eighth grader Rachel Gilbert sees it.
The 14-year-old recently won the girls’ High Point Trophy in the GISA Region 2-AA varsity track and field meet with 34.5 points out of a possible 35. She was the region champion in the 200-meter, the 400m and the long jump. Gilbert also ran the second leg on the region champion 1600m relay team and the anchor leg on the second-place 400m relay team.
“Being a region champion felt great,” said the A-plus student. “It made me feel important. I can’t describe how happy I felt. Our whole team worked so hard to get where we were.”
The three-sport athlete gets a real adrenaline rush from track and says that the 400m is her favorite event.
“I get so worked up before a race,” she said. “In the 400, you basically sprint the whole thing. Your legs feel like they are about to fall off but you have to have left to kick it at the end.”