Eastside sweeps Madison County to start region play

COVINGTON -- Eastside started Region 8-AAAA play with a pair of wins over region opponent Madison County in back-to-back games on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Eastside (10-1, 2-0) took the first game at home 4-2 before traveling to Danielsville on Wednesday to beat the Red Raiders (2-8, 0-2) 15-2.

The Eagles hosted the Red Raiders in the opening matchup with Daniel Garrett on the mound for Eastside. Madison County promptly put a pair of men in scoring position, but that would be as far as they went as a deep fly ball to center fielder Cody Walker was snagged to end the threat.

Eastside wasted no time in getting on the board as it took a 2-0 lead in the first inning on a two-run homer by Garrett. Madison County evened the score in the third as Garrett gave up back-to-back solo home runs, but the Eagles regained the lead in the bottom of the inning after Peyton Pallay singled and eventually crossed the plate for a run.

Other than a solo home run in the bottom of the fifth inning by Walker, the remainder of the game was a scoreless affair for both teams as both starting pitchers went the distance.

In the second game of the series, freshman Gray Ritchey took the mound for the Eagles and had a good start as the game remained scoreless after one inning of play. The Eagles exploded in the second, putting six runs on the board on a two-out rally with a mixture of walks and hits. Walker doubled to left to drive in Hank Steele, followed by Musashi Briem plating Chase Chancey.

The Red Raiders committed an error throwing the ball, allowing Walker, Pallay and Briem to score as well. Drew Buckhault singled in the inning, driving in the sixth run. Madison County tried to answer back but could only muster two runs in its half of the inning after it also capitalized on pair of walks followed by three straight singles.

The Red Raiders would not score for the balance of the game as Ty Raynor was also effective pitching in relief of Ritchey beginning in the fourth inning. The Eagles went on to post three more runs in the fourth inning on a Briem double. The top of the seventh inning saw Eastside bring 11 men to the plate and add another six runs to its lead courtesy of hits from Briem, Buckhault (triple), Nick Womack and Steele.