Northgate ends week of wins vs. Clayton schools
by Staff Reports
A week after coming up short in a key Region 4-AAAAA game, Northgate’s baseball team wasn’t about to endure another “Black Friday.”
The Vikings closed out a three-game sweep this week against 4-AAAAA opponents from Clayton County with a 5-1 victory at Mundy’s Mill behind a complete-game effort by senior Robert Massenburg that also helped put Northgate into a three-way tie for first place.
Unable to play in last Friday’s 16-8 loss to McIntosh at home, Massenburg slowed the Mustangs to a crawl while allowing just one run off five hits and striking out four without yielding a walk.
The Vikings improved to 6-2 in 4-AAAAA among a trio of two-loss teams atop the region standings.
McIntosh (7-2) suffered its second straight region loss over consecutive days on Friday, falling at Ola to fall into a three-way tie with Northgate and Starr’s Mill despite holding a head-to-head tiebreaker against the Vikings.
The Panthers defeated McIntosh (4-3) and Drew (6-2) over consecutive days to improve to 8-2 in an ever-tightening playoff race in 4-AAAAA.
The Vikings, who travel to Creekside on Monday, will host Starr’s Mill on Wednesday.
Against Mundy’s Mill on Friday, designated hitter Jeffrey Ginn continued a recent tear by going 2-for-2 to raise his team-leading batting average to .650 over his first 20 at bats of the season.
Ginn reached and scored during a pair of two-run rallies in the second and fourth innings that pushed a 4-0 lead against Mundy’s Mill. Despite leaving 10 runners on base off seven hits, three walks and Mustang errors, Northgate only needed a pair of runs in the second to stay in front behind Massenburg’s effort.
Ginn got things started with an RBI single that scored teammate Jordan Schmits after he reached on an error. Buddy Green plated Ginn with another run-scoring hit.
In the fourth, Ginn and Andrew Burden drew consecutive one-out walks before leadoff hitter James Poropatic followed with an RBI single. An error by Mundy’s Mill on a ball hit by Armand Upshaw pushed the Northgate lead to four runs.
Massenburg allowed runners in his first three innings, including a pair in the second before hitting a groove. He retired seven unanswered before allowing a leadoff triple in the sixth that led to the Mustangs’ lone run.