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Statesboro's struggles continue vs. Effingham
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The long season continued for the Statesboro baseball team Friday evening at Mill Creek park. The Blue Devils lost a heartbreaking 5-4 game on Wednesday to Effingham County in a game where they held a 4-0 lead in the seventh inning. This time around it wasn’t really close as they dropped an 8-0 decision to the visiting Rebels.

The losing streak is now at 13 games for Statesboro, who fall to 1-14 on the season. The same problems that have hurt the Blue Devils throughout the streak continued on Friday. Statesboro committed four errors, could not capitalize when they were able to put runners on base, and only managed four hits the entire game.

“That big inning just proved too much for us to overcome,” said Statesboro coach Jim Simmons. “Their pitchers did a good job. I still think our approach is getting better at the plate, but we are definitely not putting enough balls in play, and are definitely not making the plays in the field.”

Effingham started the scoring in the second inning. A walk and a hit batsman was followed by an RBI double by Christian Campbell to make it 1-0 Rebels.

The floodgates opened in the fourth inning. Chase Howze walked, advanced to second on a wild pitch, then scored, as a bunt by Jordan Rahn was mishandled at first, allowing Howze to come home. Later with two on, another bunt resulted in a ball misplayed at first allowing both runners to score to make it 4-0.

A wild pitch brought in run number five, followed by a triple by Jerid Stokes, who then scored on another wild pitch to make it 6-0. Back to back singles by Zach WIlson and Cullen Wake extended the Rebel lead to 7-0.

Statesboro loaded the bases in the bottom of the fourth but a strikeout ended the inning. The Blue Devils then left two runner on in the sixth.

The Rebels added another run in the top of the seventh as Howze led off with a double, moved to third on a fielder’s choice, and then scored on the Blue Devils’ fourth error of the game.

“We are trying to remain as positive as we can with them,” Simmons said. “They are remaining coachable, and I expect them to be ready at our next practice. Region play starts next week and maybe that will be the spark that gets us going”
Statesboro begins region play with a trip to Ware County on Monday. First pitch is scheduled for 5 p.m.