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Gainesville struggles at the plate in 4-1 loss to Loganville

Red Elephants visit Red Devils in rematch Monday

POSTED: April 4, 2014 9:39 p.m.
Nat Gurley | The Times/

Gainesville's Mikey Gonzalez delivers a pitch to a Loganville batter in the seventh inning of Friday's game at Ivey-Watson Field. Loganville won 4-1.

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All of a sudden, Gainesville’s rematch with Loganville on Monday became that much more important, after its first meeting Friday resulted in a 4-1 loss for the Red Elephants at Ivey-Watson Field.

The Red Devils (12-4, 7-0 Region 8-AAAAA) scored two insurance runs in the sixth inning after Gainesville (11-6, 5-2) starter Michael Gettys recorded 10 strikeouts and allowed seven hits through the first six innings.

Now, the Red Elephants are hoping for a win in two days to get back to within one game of the top spot in the region with Loganville.

'“The good news for us, I think our schedule has been tougher to this point, so if we win Monday, we’ll be right back in it,” Gainesville coach Jeremy Kemp said.

The one thing about the loss that did bother Kemp was a lackluster effort by the Red Elephants at the plate with only three hits against Red Devils left-hander Austin Hendricks, who struck out six and walked four.

“We weren’t hitting the ball well, chased too many bad pitches,” Kemp said.

For Loganville coach Jeff Segars, it was a breath of fresh air after dropping a pair of one-run decisions to the Red Elephants in 2013. He said Hendricks’ effort had much to do with the win.

“Austin’s been throwing it well for us all season,” Segars said. “Against a team like Gainesville, you have to throw three pitches for strikes.”

Trailing 2-0 in the bottom of the first inning, Sims Griffith had Gainesville’s only extra base hit of the night, a double, and came in to score on catcher Michael Curry’s single off the top of the shortstop’s glove, who jumped to try and make the catch.

The Red Elephants would also put a runner in scoring position in the fifth and sixth innings, but were unable to score. In the sixth with Luke Maddox at third after his lead-off walk, Caleb Whitenton hit a long fly ball to the right field fence for the final out.

Maddox made it on with a walk on four pitches, advanced to second on a passed ball and to third base on a ground out by Gettys.

In the fifth, it was Brandon Sewell who got on from the lead-off spot after he struck out but got on base when the ball went to the fence on a passed ball. Harrison Styles' single through the hole at shortstop, combined with a ground out by Drew Wright, got the lead runner to third base.

Leading 2-1 in the top of the sixth, Loganville’s David Chabut jumped on a fastball that tailed away from center field to the left with the help of the wind gust and went to the gap for a stand-up double.

After Chandler Downing reached on a bunt back to the mound that wasn’t fielded cleanly, the Red Devils had runners on the corners with no outs.

The first of Loganville’s runs in the inning scored with Royce Harrison’s suicide squeeze to the first base line, followed by Brandon Williams’ RBI double over third base and to the fence in the left-field corner.

The Red Devils jumped out to an early lead with a pair of runs in the top of the first inning. Logan Mattix opened the game with a single, Downing drew a one-out walk and Harrison had a two-run double to the left-field corner.

Loganville, which has won eight straight, loaded the bases in the seventh inning but Gainesville reliever Mikey Gonzalez got out of the inning without any damage.

On Monday, Gainesville visits Loganville at 5:55 p.m.


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