Spring Garden rebounds to take area baseball series against Gaylesville

Spring Garden’s Chapel Pope slides safely into third base on a steal during the first game of a doubleheader against Gaylesville on Thursday. Photo by Shannon Fagan.

By Shannon Fagan, WEIS Sports Director

SPRING GARDEN – Wednesday was not a fun day for the Spring Garden baseball team.

After losing their Class 1A, Area 13 opener at Gaylesville on Tuesday, head coach Cole Murphy said he and assistant coach Greg Maddox were both sore from all the reps they put the Panthers through during Wednesday’s practice.

While practice didn’t make perfect for Thursday’s doubleheader with the Trojans at Spring Garden, it did make for improved play by the Panthers.

Behind starting pitchers Zane Edwards and Carson Bostick, the Panthers prevailed 9-2 and 15-3 in five innings to take the series.

Zane and Carson did a great job pitching. Both of them threw complete games,” Murphy said. “Some of our kids haven’t been in that situation before, so you kind of lean on guys like Zane and Carson.

Our defense had their backs for the most part. We had a couple of errors at the beginning of both games that kind of hurt us, but we responded well with the bats and scored some runs and then kind of took the momentum over. Overall, I’m pleased with how they responded, but we’ve got a long way to go to get where we need to be.”

Chapel Pope set the tone for the Panthers (7-5) in his first at-bat in game one. He led off with a double to left off Trojan starter Hunter Allmond. Pope gave the Panthers a 1-0 lead when he scored on John Welsh’s grounder to short.

Pope picked the Panthers up again in the second with a two-run single to left to give Spring Garden a 3-0 advantage. He finished the game going 2-for-3 with two runs and two RBIs. Welsh also added a pair of hits, a run and a RBI.

Gaylesville got back in the game on a Kyler Bradley double to right and pair of back-to-back run-scoring singles by Collin Hendon and Alex Baty. Those runs cut Spring Garden’s lead to 3-2.

The Panthers scored three times in the third and three more runs in the sixth for the final.

Edwards scattered two runs (one earned) on eight hits with a walk and four strikeouts in earning the complete-game win. He also helped himself at the plate with a two-run double in the sixth.

Braden Sharp led the Trojans (10-4) at the plate by going 3-for-3 with a walk. Allmond suffered the loss after giving up 11 hits with six strikeouts.

Much like in game one on Tuesday, the Trojans put the pressure on the Panthers early in Thursday’s nightcap. They scored three runs off Bostick thanks to singles by Bradley, Jack Sentell and Allmond.

But the Panthers responded by batting around and scoring five runs in the bottom of the first off Trojan starter Hendon. The big blow of the inning was a two-run single to left by Joel Hunter.

Spring Garden kept adding to its lead. The Panthers scored a run in the second, sent 11 men to the plate and scored six more runs in the third. They added three more in the bottom of the fourth for the final.

Hunter, John Welsh and Clayton Sadler each had a pair of hits in the second game for the Panthers. Sadler drove in four runs. Jake Welsh added a hit, a walk, scored three runs and had two RBIs.

I felt like most innings we came in with the mindset of doing it again, getting on base and being smart,” Murphy said. “We put the ball in play pretty well, and that’s all you can ask for.”

Bostick settled in after the first inning to earn the win. He didn’t allow an earned run on four hits with four walks and four strikeouts.

Hendon suffered the loss for the Trojans after working just two innings before giving way to Kyler Bradley in the third.

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