BOYS BASEBALL

Seahawks bounce back after PSJ loss

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It was a busy week for the Seahawks diamond men, with three games in three days due to earlier rainouts, and after falling to Port St. Joe, they came back with back-to-back wins over Blountstown and Wewahitchka.

On April 12, in a rivalry game at Port St Joe, against a district opponent, Franklin County took it on the chin 5-1.

“We just did not take advantage of the few opportunities we had to score runs,” said Coach Kevin Cox. “We had too many fly ball outs.  You’re not going to beat good teams only scoring one run.  Not our night, we didn’t execute in key situations, and they did. All the credit goes to St. Joe, they earned it. Their pitcher pitched a complete game, and he threw strikes when he had to.” 

“Odds are, we’ll see them again in the district tournament, the way things are shaping up,” said Cox.

Junior southpaw Donovan Cumbie limited Franklin County to six singles in leading Port St. Joe to  the upset.

Although striking out only five Seahawks, including three of the final four batters, Cumbie induced 14 popups or flyouts.

Cumbie’s counterpart, sophomore Cody Abercrombie, struck out five of the first six Shark hitters, but allowed a run in the second inning on junior Jack Trochessett’s single and sophomore Max Godwin’s double down the left field line. 

Wasting no time, the Seahawks tied the game in the third. Senior Garrison Cook struck out, but ran all the way to second base when the ball caromed into the backstop netting. After reaching third on a passed ball, he scored on Abercrombie’s sacrifice fly. 

St. Joe went ahead for good in their next at-bat, and the Sharks led 2-1. 

In the fourth, Seahawk juniors Chase Crum and Evan Stanley hit consecutive singles, but three fly ball outs ended the inning.

St. Joe tacked on two more runs in the fourth after senior Caden Pruitt and sophomore Fisher Vandertulip crossed the plate.

A third run was nullified when Franklin County appealed that sophomore Jentzen Odom had failed to tag up from third base after a flyout to center and a throwing error.

After the Seahawks loaded the bases with two outs in the fifth, Cumbie ended the threat with a strikeout. 

Franklin County presented its final threat in the sixth with two runners in scoring position, but Cumbie once again ended the inning with a strikeout. 

Crum led the Seahawks with two hits, with Stanley, Wyatt Abercrombie, Blakely Curry, and Cook having the other Franklin County hits. 

The Seahawks were on the road the next day against a quality team in Blountstown, and secured an 8-5 win.

“Another game where we were playing 24 hours later after a loss.  Really glad the schedule had us playing the next day although this game was on the road versus Blountstown,” said Cox. “ Really a game where you have to really find energy playing on the road back to back days. “

A back-and-forth game where the lead changed hands four times, the Tigers went ahead 5-4 in the bottom of the fifth with a three-run inning.

“The resilience of the team really showed after the tough loss the night before.  Gage Boone gave us a solid outing on the mound going five innings and only one earned run,” said Cox. “Chase Crum came on in the sixth and gave us two shutout innings to pick up the win. “

Clutch hitting from Wyatt Abercrombie and Evan Stanley were key the last few innings.  Wyatt Abercrombie was 2 for 4 on the night with a double and a two-run RBI in the seventh.

Evan Stanley had a two-out single in the sixth to tie the game.  Other key contributors were Larry Winchester who went 3 for 4  with two runs batted in and Cody Abercrombie who went 2 for 3 with an RBI. 

“Just a great bounce back win that the whole team at some point or the other had a hand in,” said Cox.

On Friday night at home, the Seahawks played their final game of three games in three days, and shut out Wewahitchka 7-0.

“The story of this game was the pitching performance of junior Dane Mallon,” said Cox. “Mallon pitched a complete game shutout, only allowing two hits with 14 strikeouts and no walks.  Just what we needed when playing three games in three nights. 

“We swung the bats well and really were not rewarded with as many runs as you would think with 12 hits.  Wewa made some good defensive plays to keep the game tight,” said Cox.

Junior Evan Stanley went 4 for 4 with three runs batted in and a double. Junior Chase Crum also chipped in, going 3 for 4,  Senior Blakely Curry also came through with a bases-loaded double and two runs batted in that broke the game open in the fourth, as the Seahawks plated three runs.  Senior Will Varnes, sophomore Cody Abercrombie and junior Wyatt Abercrombie each had a hit apiece.  

“It was a good way to finish the week with a district win and set ourselves up for next week,” said Cox.

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