Three days after beating the Cavaliers 15-0 in both teams’ season opener, the Lions needed the runs to fend off the Cavaliers (0-2), winning 6-1 in six innings in a game called because of darkness.
“It was tough, our guys came in kind of thinking that they would win 15-0 again,” first-year Lions’ head coach Matt Klimas said. “We weren’t focused to start the game.
“As the game progressed they realized they can’t just turn on the light switch and score 15 and they got more focused as the game went on. Pitching kept us in the game which is always a plus.”
Lions starter Tripp Finley cruised through the first four innings, allowing an unearned run on two hits and a walk while striking out four.
Noah Fouche relieved him in the fifth inning with the Lions up 3-1. He walked two with one out but retired the next two batters on a strikeout and liner back to the mound to end the threat. He then retired the side in order to end the game.
Augusta Prep junior right-hander Sam Cleary kept Augusta Christian off balance with his overhand curveball but got himself in trouble by walking four and hitting four. He lasted five innings, allowing six runs on five hits while only striking out one.
The Lions (2-0) took advantage of Cleary’s wildness, pushing across their first three runs on sacrifice flys from Caleb Teske and Michael Weiksner and a fielder’s choice by Cason Greene.
Cavaliers head coach Tim Shafer liked how his shorthanded team looked from the first game of the year to the second.
“We made a lot of improvements today but we have a long way to go and I think we’re going to get there,” said Shafer, who is waiting on four players to finish their run with the basketball team, who are in the semifinals of the Georgia Independent School Association Class AAA state tournament.