The BA Gators traveled to St.Simons Friday to take on the Fredrica Knights in Region 2-AA Varsity Baseball and came away with a 15-5 victory. The chink in the Knight's armor turned out to be their young pitching staff, and BA capitalized by sounding off with their bats, amassing 14 hits for the day. Veteran Junior pitcher Walker Blitch picked up his third win of the year by going five innings before the game was run-ruled in the sixth. Win Lee closed out the game with a scoreless sixth inning, earning the save.
Head Coach Daryl Evans also took advantage of the young FA team and made some moves of his own in the Gator line-up. Giving senior catcher Matt Sapp his first break from behind the plate this year, sophomore Hunter Jacobs got the start. The strategy payed off as Sapp stayed in the batting order as the designated hitter was 2 for 3 for the day with 2 RBI's. He was also intentionally walked and hit by a pitch in the game keeping him on the bases all afternoon, picking up a steal and giving the Gators aggressive options in base-running . Jacobs has been the starter at first throughout the year, and as the back-up catcher for the Gators got some valuable experience going the distance as the pitch receiver.
Sophomore Clayton Rogers, the usual starting second baseman took the spot at first and freshman Loy Waters got the call to cover second. Again, Coach Evans decision here was a good one, with Rogers handling eight outs with no errors for the day. He also went 3-4 at the plate, scoring two runs and batting in another two. Waters stepped up at second with three put outs and errorless play while hitting 2-3 and scoring two runs himself.
Veteran junior Win Lee took his spot at short and again was a team leader going 3-4, including a double, with 2 runs scored and one RBI. On the hot corner at third, another Freshman, Bailey Smith got the start playing confidently and going 1-3 on the day and scoring 2 runs. Bulloch used their experinced outfielders with seniors Brian Atkinson in left, Taylor Burke in center, and junior Davis Howell in right. All three played solidly as well, fielding all fly balls for outs and allowing no extra bases on grounders that made it through the infield. With the lead as it was, freshmen Chandler Maxwell and Harrison Averitt took over in the sixth for Atkinson and Howell on defense.
BA is now 4-3 on the season and 3-1 in their region. They travel to Stillmore Saturday to take on Crisp Academy from Cordele, GA in tournament play, and will resume region play after the spring break next week.
SCHS girls take third
The Screven County Lady Gamecocks placed third in the Golden Isle tournament at Jekyll Island this weekend.
Voldosta defeated Screven 4-1 Saturday morning to knock the Gamecocks out of contention for the tournament title, but Screven bounced back to sweep Thomasville 5-0 for third place.
In the Thomasville matchup, Evan Shepperd (6-0, 6-0), Missy Zeagler (6-0, 6-1) and Katheryn Wells (6-3, 6-0) won singles matches while the duos of Kelsey Forehand and Sydnee Weaver (6-2, 6-2) and Lauren Bazemore and Lauren Thomas (6-2, 6-2) won both doubles matches.
After the split, Screven’s girls move to 13-2 overall with just two matches remaining in the regular season.
Screven’s boys were swept Saturday by Vidalia and Thomasville.
Vidalia blanked the Gamecocks, 5-0, while Thomasville came away with a 4-1 victory.
Winning the sole match for the Gamecocks was Eli Woods, who secured a 6-4, 6-2 decision.
Both squads return to action Tuesday as Screven hits the road to take on Savannah Country Day.
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