Baseball on the field

Greenwood racks up 18 hits, rolls past South Warren

After suffering a 5-1 loss on Monday, Greenwood was ready to bounce back.

Behind an all-around offensive outing, the Gators racked up 18 hits and used an eight-run fifth inning to roll to a 13-2 win over South Warren on Tuesday evening at South Warren Ballpark to even the District 14 series.

“We left too many opportunities out there (on Monday),” Greenwood coach Jason Jaggers said. “They made a few more plays, they got timely hits — we didn’t. We felt like we’ve been close, but haven’t been able to get over the hump. We needed this for ourselves to kinda prove we can get over the hump in those big district games.”

Greenwood (15-9, 6-5 District 14) led 1-0 after three innings and 2-0 at the end of four before exploding for eight runs on eight hits in the fifth to build a double-digit advantage and put South Warren (22-7, 9-2) away.

Lance Upright led the way for the Gators with a 4-for-5, three RBI showing, while Ethan Gregory went 3-for-3 with two RBI and Cade Thornton recorded a pair of RBI himself.

Leading 2-0, Greenwood added eight runs to its side of the scoreboard in the top of the fifth. Chandler Wilson began the big frame with an RBI double, and Upright immediately followed with a two-run double of his own to make it 5-0.

“It felt great,” Upright said. “Last night our approach at the plate was a little shaky. We couldn’t get any timely hits down, but tonight it felt a lot better up there. We came out swinging and got 18 hits up on the board. It’s what we’ve gotta do every game.”

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An RBI bunt from Reed Slone pushed the Gators’ lead to 6-0, and Thornton soon recorded the second two-run double of the inning following a score on a passed ball to scratch three more runs across. Mac Ausbrooks’ RBI double gave Greenwood its eighth run of the set and a comfortable 10-0 advantage.

South Warren finally answered with a two-run double by Sam Gage in the bottom of the fifth to get within 10-2, but that’s as close as the Spartans would get.

The two sides will meet in the series’ rubber match at 6 p.m. Wednesday at South Warren Ballpark.

“Tomorrow’s a big night,” said Jaggers. “I’m sure that (South Warren coach Chris) Gage will have them ready to go — and we need to be ready to go, too.”

Greenwood —       0 1 0 1 8 0 3 — 13
South Warren —  0 0 0 0 2 0 0 — 2
WP: Tyler Cook. LP: Cade Vernon.

Tyler Mansfield@ByMansfield

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