With two outs in the bottom of the seventh inning Saturday night against Cullman (Ala.), LaGrange’s John Sweat stepped to the plate in a tie game.
With a runner on third, there were all kinds of ways for the Grangers to win the game, and most of them involved Sweat making contact.
“Hit it on the ground we always tell them, and you’ve got a chance,” LaGrange head coach Todd Herrington said.
Sweat did just that.
The senior hit a sharp grounder to the second baseman, who was unable to come up with the ball, allowing Drew Eady to race home with the winning run.
The Grangers won the game 6-5, and they finished with a 2-2 record in the LaGrange Toyota Invitational.
LaGrange finished fifth out of eight teams.
LaGrange beat Russell County 2-1, and lost to Crisp County 3-0 and Lambert 8-4.
“I am proud of the way they competed. We found out some things about our team, which is what we wanted to do,” LaGrange head coach Todd Herrington said. “There’s still a few question marks out there. But we’re starting to solidify what we are, and what we’re going to be.”
The Grangers were up 5-3 against Cullman, but it was a tie game as they came to bat in the bottom of the seventh.
The first two batters were retired, but Eady’s double kept the inning alive.
“I’ve got to get on, and my teammates have got to get me in,” Eady said. “That’s all I was thinking pretty much.”
Eady moved to third on a wild pitch, and he was 90 feet away from scoring the winning run.
Sweat nearly won it when he lined a ball to right field that landed foul by a few feet.
The next time he made contact, it looked like a fairly routine play, but the second baseman bobbled the ball, and by the time he collected it he had no shot at throwing Sweat out.
The run made a winning pitcher of Tristain Daugherty, who faced four batters and didn’t give up a hit.
Daugherty entered the game with two men on in the top of the sixth and got a flyout, and he only faced three batters in the seventh thanks to a double play.
Logan Hood started the game, and he was relieved by Caleb Buchanan and Chas Pardue before Daugherty got the call.
Daugherty also pitched well in Saturday’s early game against Lambert.
“He’s up and coming. He’s right there in the mix,” Herrington said. “He’s starting to look more and more comfortable.”
The Grangers fell behind 3-0, but they scored two runs in the second inning and three more in the third to go up 5-0.
Caleb Buchanan had a double in the second inning, and Jack Bradford, Jake Norton and Sweat each had base hits in the third inning.
Cullman scored a pair of runs in the fifth inning to tie it.
In the game against Lambert, LaGrange jumped out to a 4-1 lead after scoring four runs in the bottom of the first inning, but the Grangers didn’t score again.
Price Peters and Sweat each had hits in the first inning.
LaGrange beat Russell County 2-1 in the tournament opener behind a strong pitching performance from Mitchell Donahue before falling to Crisp County 3-0 on Friday.
LaGrange will return to the field on Tuesday for a game at Newnan.