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Anglin helps Gainesville keep its season alive
Deciding Game 3 against Troup on Saturday at Ivey-Watson
Gainesville’s Ryan Griffith fouls one off during the first game of the doubleheader state playoff against Troup Friday. - photo by Tom Reed

Hunter Anglin kept Gainesville's baseball season alive Friday.

With the Red Elephants (23-5) already down one game, Anglin responded with a complete-game performance on the mound and a 7-1 victory to even the best-of-three playoff series one game apiece against Troup at Ivey-Watson Field.

The deciding Game 3 is at 3 p.m. today in Gainesville.

Anglin struck out nine hitters and allowed three hits for the Red Elephants to keep this series alive against the Tigers (18-10), who dominated the first game with a great pitching performance of their own in a 5-0 victory.

"To be in a situation like that is what I love," Anglin said. "We knew we had to win the second game and my job was to get out there and throw strikes."

Troup coach Craig Garner is comfortable taking his team into Game 3 today. It's a situation he's faced before, including back-to-back playoff series' in 2008 with the Tigers.

"That's baseball," Garner said. "We wanted to come in here today and get at least a split."

Anglin, a sophomore, retired the first eight hitters he faced, including striking out the side in order in the first inning.

He also pitched out of a two-out jam with a runner in scoring position in the second inning, along with a superb diving catch by center fielder Michael Gettys to retire the final out in the fifth inning.

"Hunter was unbelievable tonight," Gainesville coach Jeremy Kemp said. "That's the best he's been for us in a big game."

Gainesville also got timely hitting in the nightcap.

Leading 1-0 in the top of the seventh, the visiting Red Elephants scored four runs before the first out was recorded, six runs in all during their final at bat.

With two runners in scoring position, Gainesville catcher Skyler Weber started the scoring in the seventh with an RBI single.

Will Maddox followed with a high-hoping infield single that got through the defense and scored another pair of runs. Jimmy Kemp (3 for 4) added an RBI single for the Red Elephants in the seventh.

Stephen Mason added two hits for Gainesville in Game 2, including a bunt single down the first base line. Not only did Anglin have a great game on the mound, but also added two hits in the game.

The only blemish on Anglin's line on the mound was a solo home run by Troup's Rus Mormon with one out in the bottom of the seventh.

"Hunter put the team on his back in that game," Kemp said.

Kemp said that the Red Elephants are going to have to hit better today in order to advance past the opening round of the playoffs.

"We went 11 innings without scoring today, and we're going to have to hit better than that," Kemp said.

TROUP 5, GAINESVILLE 0: The Tigers took control of Friday's first game with a towering grand slam by Cody Sheffield in the bottom of the fourth inning.

Troup set the table for Sheffield innocently enough with a bunt single from Jim Reed that hugged the first base line.

Mormon followed with a walk on four pitches, and Garrett Cole was hit in the back with a pitch to load the bases.

In the fifth, Troup added an insurance run with an RBI single from Eric Escobedo.

Gainesville had its chances to score, but continually left runners on base.

In the bottom of the fifth, Gainesville had the bases loaded with two outs, but the final hitter of the inning was struck out swinging on a curveball outside.

The Red Elephants also put runners on base to start the second inning with leadoff singles from Anglin and Gonzalez.

However, a pitch out by Troup's Brad Bartlett picked off the lead runner, ultimately snuffing out the Red Elephants' rally.

Gainesville also stranded a pair of runners in the third inning.

Bartlett pitched a complete-game shutout in the first game, allowing only five hits with five strikeouts.

"He (Bartlett) did what's he's done all season for us," Garner said. "He changed speeds on his pitches especially well out there today."


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