North Lamar Panthers fall to Pleasant Grove in final baseball game of regular Season
It was a winner-take-all game for the North Lamar Panthers Friday night at home against the Pleasant Grove Hawks. Both teams came into the game with 6-3 records, which was good enough for first place in the district. That would mean the winner would take the district title.
Daniel Gibbons would start the game on the mound for the Panthers and for the second straight start, he would be involved in a 1-0 pitching duel. Unlike the game against Atlanta, though, the big lefty was on the wrong side of the score this time as his team fell to the Hawks.
Hawks’ pitcher Trey Jeans was just as masterful on the mound. Both Gibbons and Jeans pitched the complete game. Trey only allowed one hit while striking out six and walking two. Gibbons had four hits allowed, six walks and two strikeouts.
The Panthers defense was solid all day too. North Lamar had four pick-off plays on the bases. Several were runners caught in a rundown while others were just caught too far off the bag.
“We knew they were going to be aggressive like that,” Gibbons said about the Hawks.
The only run came in the top of the seventh inning when the Hawks loaded the bases with nobody out. A sacrifice fly would score the only runner in the game, though. There was a little controversy before the bases were loaded, though. Both umpires appeared to miss a third strike call. The batter had fouled off two pitches previously. When the umpired called the next pitch a strike, the batter remained in the box. Coach Scott Igleheart went out to ask why he wasn’t out but his appeal didn’t work. He would reach on a bunt single which would load the bases.
“[The Umpire] couldn’t really give me a good explanation,” Igleheart said. “I’m proud of the way our kids battled,” he concluded.
Battle they did. Last year, the Panthers had a chance to win the district title this year. That’s nothing to hang their head about. Of course, the season doesn’t end there. North Lamar heads into the playoffs to continue battling. The Panthers will face Emory/Rains in the first round of the playoffs beginning next Friday night. The series will be played in Sulphur Springs. Game 1: Friday at 7:30. Game 2: Saturday at 12:00. Game 3: 30 minutes following game 2 (if necessary).
North Lamar will play a scrimmage game Saturday against Frisco-Lone Star in Frisco at 3:00 p.m.