Pike Lib cruises to 13-2 win

Published 12:00 am Monday, March 3, 2008

Cory Goodson blasted a grand slam home run and the Pike Lib Patriots capitalized on a seven-run fifth inning to get a mercy-rule victory against Lowndes Academy Monday afternoon.

Goodson knocked in Blake Thomas, Logan Stewart and Justin McLaughlin and Justin Henderson on the homer.

&uot;Today was probably my best day of the season, batting,&uot; Goodson said. &uot;We’ve played a lot of good teams this season, but coach (Butch Austin) always has us prepared.&uot;

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That’s a fact. Of their seven wins, the Patriots have won six by 10 or more runs.

&uot;I am so proud of Cory,&uot; Austin said. &uot;He needed a good game. He’s a good kid, and he works hard.&uot;

Batting ninth, Goodson hit a double off the wall in his first at-bat. Then later, he cracked the four-bagger to put the game out of reach.&uot;

The Patriots didn’t lose a game until the Edgewood Academy Tournament in Elmore over the weekend.

Justin McLaughlin picked up the win for the Patriots, pitching five innings, striking out five and walking only two. McLaughlin

allowed one hit and one run.

Ross Hixon came on in relief and pitched the top of the sixth inning to secure the victory.

McLaughlin helped his own cause at the plate, going 2-for-3 with three RBIs and scoring once.

Will Starling went 3-for-4, with an RBI and scoring twice for the Patriots.

Logan Stewart went 2-for-3, and Justin Henderson went 3-for-4 and scored for the Patriots.

Pike Lib was leading 3-1 in the fifth inning when they finally pulled away from Lowndes Academy.

The Patriots loaded the bases and Goodson stepped to the plate. That’s when he took a fastball and drove it deep over the left-field fence to push the score to 10 runs and force the mercy rule after the top half of the sixth inning.

The Patriots are 7-3, but Austin thinks there is room for improvement.

&uot;I don’t think we’re that good yet,&uot; Austin said. &uot;We might just be lucky. We get good hits at the right time. We’re getting good pitches, and we’ve been running the bases really well. But I’ll take being lucky any day.&uot;

The Edgewood tournament and this week’s schedule will leave the Patriots little time to rest.

&uot;We need a rest,&uot; Austin said. &uot;We’re all mentally tired, physically tired – including the coach.&uot;

But the week won’t get much easier. The Patriots travel to Greenwood today to Fort Dale Academy at 4 p.m.

And while there’s a day off on Wednesday, the Patriots will be back on the field March 7, hosting the Pike Liberal Arts Baseball Tournament.

&uot;We’re going to have some very good teams down here to compete,&uot; Austin said. &uot;That is going to be a big weekend for us. We may have to play five or six games that weekend.&uot;