Devils Lose to Aquinas, Beat GMC in Region Games

April 19, 2006

Last week, the Lincoln County Diamond Devils fell to 7-A foe Aquinas but came back later in the week to whip Prince Avenue and GMC. Our Devils are now 4-2 in region play.

Aquinas 15, Lincoln County 0

LCHS was annihilated by a highly ranked Aquinas team Wednesday, 15-0. Aquinas first baseman John Douglas led the Irish barrage with two grand slam home runs. Four Red Devil errors, six bases on balls and eleven Aquinas hits were more than the Devils could handle in the Region 7-A match-up. Aquinas pitcher Mike Cardwell pitched a four inning perfect game against LCHS.

Lincoln County 7, Prince Avenue 4

The Devils bounced back from the debacle at Aquinas with a 7-4 victory over Prince Avenue Thursday. The Devils took an early lead when Alex Bradford walked, stole second and scored on Austin Goldmanís RBI single. In the second, Crafton Reed singled, Trey Bailey walked and Goldman doubled in both base runners. Goldman then scored on Brandon Bardenís fifth home run of the season. In the third, Kiece Crite singled and stole second. Josh Hollimon then singled in Crite. Austin Reed ran for Hollimon and stole second. Crafton Reed then hit a long single to left moving big brother Austin to third. Bradford walked to load the bases and Goldman walked to force in the Devilsí final run of the day to give LCHS a 7-0 lead. Dalton Tankersley retired all nine hitters he faced in the first three innings but ran into trouble in the fourth. Prince Avenue scored three runs in the fourth to cut the lead to 7-3 and added another in the fifth for the final score. Tankersley got his first varsity win and Casey Norman notched a save. Leading hitters for the Devils were Goldman (3-3), Barden (2-4) and Crafton Reed (2-4).

Coach Billy Beale stated after the game that "this was a huge win for us, especially with morale after yesterdayís game in Augusta. Both teams were holding back their front-line pitchers for region games on Friday but Dalton came through for us with a huge start and then Casey did an excellent job of finishing. Nine hits, four with men on base, really helped us get some momentum for tomorrowís big region game with GMC."

Lincoln County 8, GMC 5

Austin Reed pitched a strong six and two-thirdís inning to lead the Devils to a big region win Friday in Milledgeville. Alex Bradford and Tyler Beale reached base in the first inning before Brandon Bardenís run scoring double gave the LCHS a lead it would no relinquish. Austin Goldman drove in Beale on a fielderís choice to give Reed a 2-0 lead before he took the mound. The Devils nursed that 2-0 lead until the fifth. Beale singled and Barden doubled. Beale scored on Goldmanís fielderís choice and Barden scored on a single by Kiece Crite. Crite scored on Casey Normanís double to deep right center. Norman then scored on Josh Hollimonís single to give the Devilís a 6-0 lead. GMC picked up two unearned runs in the bottom of the fifth to cut the LCHS lead to 6-2. Beale then led off the sixth with a walk and scored on Bardenís sixth home run to stretch the lead to 8-2. Barden came in in the bottom of the seventh with two outs and the bases loaded. He walked the first hitter he faced but then retired the final GMC hitter on a strange play. The GMC hitter hit a hard ground ball to second but the runner leaving first ran into the ball to end the game.

Leading hitters were Trey Bailey (2-4), Brandon Barden (3-4), Casey Norman (4-4) Josh Hollimon (2-4) and Crafton Reed (2-4). Austin Reed won his third game of the season and Brandon picked up his first save.

Coach Beale said that "this was a big region win for us. Austin pitched as well as Iíve ever seen him pitch through six innings. A big key is the bottom of the order coming through for us. Crafton and Josh have gotten seven hits in two days between the two of them. The guys are working to cut down on strikeouts and that is helping us a lot."

The victory gives the Devils an 11-10 record and a 4-2 Region 7-A record.