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Eastside baseball drops two games in South Georgia

VALDOSTA -- The Eastside baseball squad hit the road and traveled to Valdosta for a Saturday doubleheader, losing 4-1 to Berrien and 9-7 to Houston County.

Against their first opponent, Drew Buckhault took the mound for the Eagles and was effective early on as the game remained scoreless through the first couple of innings. The Rebels eventually broke through in the bottom of the third to score a pair of runs behind a walk and a couple of hits.

The Eagles' bats remained quiet through the first five innings with the exception of a lone single by senior Joey Mitchell. A pitching change in the fourth inning would bring Musashi Briem to the mound for the Eagles.

Berrien scored another run in the fifth and one in the sixth as Briem yielded three hits and one walk in his appearance.

The Eagles were able to put men on base in the sixth, starting off with a hit by Tre Sims followed by Matt Hitchcock reaching on a fielder's choice. Buckhault drove in Eastside's only run of the game as he plated Hitchcock. Eastside was unable to generate any offense in the seventh and suffered its first loss of the season.

In the second game, the Eagles quickly found themselves in a 3-0 hole as the Bears jumped out to a quick start. An error, a couple of walks and a big triple off junior starter Ty Raynor led to three runs in the first.

Eastside generated some offense in the third and fourth innings, scoring two runs in each. In the third, Mitchell hit a double while senior Jake Wright drew a walk. Briem doubled, driving in Mitchell and Wright, and scored on a wild pitch. In the fourth, Hitchcock reached first on a single. Senior Tyler Bailey powered a double to right field. Both Hitchcock and Bailey scored, but Eastside was still down 6-4 at the end of the fourth inning.

Houston County scored a run in each of the final three innings off Eastside relievers Peyton Pallay and Mitchell. Eastside tried to make a comeback in the bottom of the seventh with David VanLeuven getting a base hit, Hitchcock being hit by a pitch and Bailey drawing a walk to load the bases with Sims coming to the plate. Sims reached on an error as one run scored. The Eagles scored another run on a Mitchell groundout, but the inning ended with Eastside stranding a pair of runners.

Despite the loss, Eastside outhit its opponent eight to six hits.