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Jones beats Lee as Trojans lose second game in a row

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

LEESBURG -- Jones County head coach Barry Veal didn't exactly sit back and have his legs propped up in the dugout waiting for a seventh-inning comeback.

But, then again, the Greyhounds have been known for scoring last-inning runs this year.

Jones County did it again Friday, rallying for three runs in the seventh to top Lee County, 6-4, and sending the Trojans to their second Region 1-AAAA loss in as many days. Both losses to Hardaway and Jones County were out of subregion 1S-AAAA play, though.

"One thing we've been doing is scoring in the seventh (inning)," said Veal, whose team had scored half its runs this year in the last inning before Thursday's win at Americus-Sumter. "It was big for our confidence to come down here and beat somebody like Lee County."

The Trojans (6-3) led the entire way on the strength of five solid innings on the mound from sophomore Jess Posey. Lee clung to a 4-3 lead in the seventh when the Greyhounds' late-night magic started.

Phillip Anderson was called on to finish the game after throwing just 55 pitches and five innings Tuesday to improve his record to 3-0. His first loss of the season came in relief Friday.

The seventh started with an error, one of three on the night for the Trojans, all of which led to unearned runs. Jones' Blake Burriss then doubled to the gap, scoring Chaz Smith to tie the game at 4-4.

"We just haven't been making the routine plays when we've got to make them," Lee County coach Rob Williams said. "It's as simple as that."

Burriss' game-tying double was his first varsity hit, although he fell rounding second and was thrown out.

"We got a win, so now we'll go back on the bus and laugh at him for what he did," Veal said of Burriss' clutch hit and then the base-running miscue.

Anderson (3-1), who had been nearly unhittable as a starter, walked Cody Lanford and then gave up the go-ahead run on Terrance Lore's triple. Lore then scored on a wild pitch to put Jones up, 6-4.

Greyhounds senior starting pitcher Kyle Perry backed the rally up in the bottom of the seventh, finishing a complete-game effort in which he allowed four runs (three earned), six hits and two walks. Perry struck out four while throwing 97 pitches.

Posey left in the sixth with a 4-2 lead after allowing the first two baserunners to reach base. He threw 78 pitches in five-plus innings, giving up three runs (one earned) on four hits, while striking out four and walking none.

"A lot of it's just finishing," said Posey, who went 1-for-3 at the plate. "Things happen. That's baseball, though. We're fine. We'll find that knockout punch."

Lee County took a 4-1 lead in the third when the Trojans' Chases -- Chase Patrick and Chase Griffin -- both scored on a wild pitch that the catcher was unable to locate. Mark Fowler (1-for-2) had an RBI-single in the second, and Jake Moye added a RBI groundout for the Trojans' only run-scoring hits.

"We've got to hit in the clutch," Williams said. "We're not stringing any hits together. We've now dropped two in a row to people in the region that may come back (to bite us) in a tiebreaker (scenario).

"The biggest thing we've got to do is win our subregion games and get a good subregion seed and the rest will take care of itself."

Griffin went 2-for-3 at the plate and scored two runs for the Trojans. Zack Blount was 1-for-4 with a RBI and scored a run for the Greyhounds (5-3), while Kasey Soles added two RBI.

Lee County travels to Thomas County Central Tuesday in a Region 1S-AAAA contest.