North Hall didn’t waste any opportunities with the bases loaded Wednesday at Jody Davis Field. The Trojans hit four times with the bases full, twice doubling, as they topped Lumpkin County 13-3 on Wednesday in Gainesville.
“We’ve been making adjustments with popping balls up in the air,” North Hall coach Trevor Flow said. “We did a lot of adjustments at practice with that and really focused hard on hitting ground balls through holes and lining out balls.”
Dylan Wiley connected on both two-run scoring doubles for North Hall (13-8, 12-2 Region 7-3A). With the win, the Trojans carry the three-game series with one left to play Friday in Dahlonega.
Wiley’s second double put the Trojans ahead 11-3 as the game was shortened to six innings.
“Dylan has been big for us,” Flow said. “What I was most proud of was him hitting the ball opposite field with that first double. It’s something that we’ve worked on tirelessly, so when you see that work come to life that was awesome.”
On the mound, Kelton Kieschnick was strong through the first four innings, then tagged for the only three runs in the fifth inning. The Indians pieced together four straight singles and led 3-2 in the fifth inning, scoring twice on sacrifice flies.
After that, Kieschnick settled down and didn’t allow another run.
“His performance was tremendous,” Flow said. “I thought he pounded the strike zone.”
North Hall’s big fifth inning started with Caleb Clark’s lead-off double down the left-field line. Clark scored on David Seavey’s single, which tied the game at 3-all.
“That was a big at bat for him (Seavey),” Flow said. “We work on competing in two-strike competitions, so him tying the game right there (was great). Anytime you’re down you press a little bit. So when we tied the game, it was a breath of ‘Okay we’re back in it. Let’s just settle down and see what we can do.’ I think they did a good job of that.”
Next up, Caleb Wiley responded with a single to left, putting Trojans on first and second base. Jackson Dyer laid down a bunt to the pitcher, who missed on the force-out attempt at third base and no outs.
Jack Wiley walked with the bases loaded, scoring the go-ahead run. The first out of the inning came via Caleb Payne’s sacrifice fly, which scored Caleb Wiley for North Hall.
“I was probably most proud of how they responded to that adversity in the fifth,” Flow said. “We basically gave them three unearned (runs) and they came back and responded. That’s a good sign — into where you want to be and into the playoffs — that if something were to go wrong, they won’t give up. I was most proud of that.”
North Hall’s starter allowed only two hits before his only bumpy inning.
Kieschnick finished the game needing only 73 pitches.
“I don’t think we’re peaking,” Kieschnick said. “We still have a lot to work on just little things that we aren’t doing well in. We had a couple miscues but we’ll keep working and get those knocked out.
“I think we’ll be a force to be reckoned with.”