Monroe baseball wins to stay in Region 1-AAA playoff race

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

ALBANY -- Fresh off a region loss to Westover on Monday, Monroe was looking for a way to get back into the thick of things in the Region 1-AAA picture.

Behind a 10-strikeout performance from Andrew Kegler, the Tornadoes did just that as they upended Dougherty, 12-2, on Tuesday at Paul Eames Park.

"It was hard on me," Kegler said of his exceptional pitching performance. "I tried to pitch the best game I could so we can get in the playoffs."

Kegler pitched a complete game, and also went 1-for-4 at the plate and scored two runs.

"It (a win) would not be possible if it wasn't for my team and my good catcher (Johntavious Strum)," Kegler said.

Strum went 3-for-4 and scored a run. Justin Mims was 2-for-4 with a triple, and two RBI, and scored twice. Xavier Rollins went 2-for-4 and scored a run, and Alvin Butler went 2-for-4, scored three runs and had an RBI for Monroe (14-8 and 4-7 in Region 1-AAA), .

"We started off slow," Butler said. "But when we got our heads together we played a better game."

Dougherty (0-12, and 0-10 in the region) had a promising start as Desmond Fuller hit a single up the middle that drove in two runs in the top of the first, but Monroe answered with an eight-run inning, and Kegler slammed the door, and the Tornadoes added four runs in the sixth to win by the mercy rule.

"We're still not playing that way I want them to be playing at this time of the year," Monroe coach Cecil Williams said. "We've got the speed, a little pitching, and defense. They just got to play."

Monroe will look the keep its success in the region going against Peach County on Friday.