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Weather wipes out SEB-ECI
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    BROOKLET — Although it didn’t count, the Southeast Bulloch Yellow Jackets (6-4, 2-1 Region 3-AA) got in some much needed work as they took a 5-3 lead over the Emanuel County Bulldogs through three innings Wednesday.
    The Jackets loaded the bases after ECI pitcher Harrison Bills walked three-straight SEB batters before the game was called in the bottom half of the third on account of rain and the threat of lightening.
    “This kind of game is always tough because it’s in between region games,” said Jacket coach Stephen Hoyle. “Both teams aren’t throwing their No. 1 or No. 2 (pitchers), but it gives our hitters a chance to be patient at the plate – lets them get their timing down, see some pitches (and) work on their swing. We tried to execute a few bunts here and there to see what happens.”
    Southeast Bulloch got nine free passes through the bottom of the third — seven walks and two hit batsmen — and leadoff hitter Tony Raymond (2 BB) crossed the plate twice.
    Raymond started batting at the top of the order in SEB’s 5-0 win against Laney on Friday. He has made a case for solidifying the spot on the lineup.
    “It’s always a revolving door,” Hoyle said. “If he keeps performing like he has the last couple of ballgames, he’ll stay in there. That leadoff spot is so important that you want him to get on base that first inning and try not to strike out much in that spot. As long as he’s doing the job, he’ll keep it.”
    Second baseman Justin Daniels lead the team from the plate finishing 2-for-2, and Cory Ward went 1-for-2 with 2 RBIs.
    Jacket reliever Matt Conner got out of a jam in the top of the third with back-to-back strikeouts, and Robbins saved some damage in the bottom of the second when he came in with two on and one out to shut down Southeast Bulloch.
The Yellow Jackets will return to region play against Jefferson County (2-2, Region 3-AA) Friday. At 2-1, the Jackets could add some separation in the region standings with a win.
    “We’re neck and neck with (Jefferson) right now,” said Hoyle. “That’s going to be a big game for us. They’re playing real good ball right now, and they’re on a little winning streak. They’ve won their last two, and we’ve won our last two, so it’ll be a good matchup and we’ll see where we go.”
Notes: The game got off to a late start after the junior varsity game was suspended twice due to lightning. The varsity game was halted for 15 minutes in the top of the second before it was called in the bottom of the third. … SEB will re-schedule the ECI game in the next two weeks. The teams will start fresh and play a full game. … ECI starter Bobby Robbins faced 10 SEB batters, walking four and hitting two. … The Jackets are coming off a region win Tuesday after they knocked off Josey 11-1. David McCarthy went the distance for the win.

    Matt Yogus can be reached at (912) 489-9404.