The Panthers faced off against the Gilmer County Bobcats in a non-conference matchup. The Panthers entered the contest with a 1-1 record.
Davis took the mound for the Panthers for the second time this season. Davis pitched well as he allowed one earned run during 4 innings of work.
Davis got info some trouble to start the game allowing a hit and a walk as the Bobcats pounced onto an early lead 1-0.
Banton stepped in to relive Davis after 4 innings of work. Davis finished with 1 K and 2 BB’s over the course of 4 innings. Davis allowed one earned run.
Can Colwell helped the Panthers grab a lead in the bottom of the 4th with a 2-out, 2-run, single.
The Panthers got into some trouble early in the 6th inning after an error at 3rd base let the Bobcats gain some momentum as they went on to score 3 runs. The Panthers trailed 4-2.
After allowing 3 runs, 2 of which were earned, Banton returned to pitch in the 7th. Banton struck out a batter to start the 7th and finished with 2 groundouts.
Trialing by 2 the Panthers looked to regain the lead and a win. Allison and Ruff walked. Banton got on base with a single. Junior Kelley hit a 2-out, bases clearing, double in walkoff fashion to win the game.
The Panthers were led by, Ruff with 3 HBP BB’s 1RBI and Can. Colwell 1-3 with 2 RBI’s.
The Panthers improve to 2-1. The Panthers will host the Rabun County Wildcats Monday, Feb. 26th in a non-conference matchup.
The Panthers faced off against the Commerce Tigers in a double header. This would be the Panthers first test of the season. Commerce is considered one of the better teams in the 1A-Private region.
The first pitch was at 4:05. Baggett was UC’s first baserunner of the season and Dyer was the first base hit of the year.
Ruff was the first to pitch for the Panthers in a game that would dig into the bullpen. Ruff pitched 2 innings. Ruff struck 2 batters out, walked 1, allowed 4 hits, Ruff was allotted for 3 earned runs.
Rich took over in inning 3 as the Panthers trailed 3-0. Rich pitched 2 shut out innings as Baggett tied the game up in top of the 4th with a 3 run 2 our single.
Rich got into some trouble early in the 5th as 3 hits and 2 walks as he gave up 3 earned runs. Rich finished with 4 K’s, 4 BB’s, and 3 ER.
Banton stepped in to finish the inning as the Panthers trailed 3-7 at the end of the 5th.
The Panthers put the comeback in force as they scored 2 runs in the 6th which was started by a Baggettt walk.
Colwell stepped in to pitch the 6th as he allowed 2 runs Colwell allowed 4 hits with 1 K.
Baggett finished 2-2 with 4 RBI’s and 2 BB’s and 2 steals.
Harkins started the second game of the evening as he pitched 2 innings.
Baggett was the first run of the second game as he scored off of a walk, a stolen base, and an error.
The Panthers used a huge second inning to separate from the Tigers as Schafer hit his first home run of his career. The Panthers led 6-2 after the 2nd.
J. Colwell took over in the top of the 3rd as he gathered 4 K’s over the course of 4 innings. Colwell allowed 3 runs and walked 4.
Davis stepped in to close the game as he finished with 2 K’s and 1 BB.
Schafer led the Panthers going 2-2 with a homerun and a INF single. Dyer followed with going 2-3 with 2 RBI’s.
The Panthers improved to 1-1 as they split the series. The Panthers next game will be against Rabun county in a non-region matchup Tues. Feb 20th. The first pitch is scheduled for 4:00.
The Panthers look to improve after striking out on a 10-15 2017 season, and with a dugout full of experience returning this season, they’re chances are looking pretty good.
“The Panthers graduated only 3 players after the 2017 season,” third year head coach Robby Roxbury said in a recent interview with your TeamFYNSports reporter. He added, “This team has a lot of potential and we’re looking on building momentum early in the season and riding on it throughout the season.”
This 2018 Panthers roster returns many starters and carries a deep bullpen into this season. Region 7-AAA is one of the more difficult regions in the state as North Hall won the state championship during the 2017 season and GAC advanced into the quarterfinals.
Coach Roxbury when asked about how this region stacks up replied, “You look at this region and say wow! This is easily one of the most talented and most difficult regions in the state. Just to show how talented this region is, North Hall placed 3rd in the region last year and went on to win the state championship.”
The Panthers look to lean on the senior leadership from this team as they will have 7 seniors. All 5 of the 7 seniors have played all 4 years at Union County.
When asking senior infielder Patrick Baggett on what he thought about the upcoming season: ‘“This has been the quickest 3 years of my life I can’t believe we’re already seniors I’ve played with these guys since t-ball. I think we will improve a lot in contrast to last year, I’m not going to lie it was a difficult year for all of us we hate losing.”
Baggett along with the rest of the players, coaches, and fans hope to see this team make a deep run in the playoffs.