High School Baseball
Northgate rolls past Drew in 14-6 in Region game
by Doug Gorman
Northgate rolls past Drew in Region 4-AAAAA baseball game, 14-6
By DOUG GORMAN firstname.lastname@example.org
Northgate baseball coach Greg Hamilton’s message to his team heading into this week’s hectic schedule is to take it one game at a time. So far, so good.
In the first of four Region 4-AAAAA contests, the Vikings knocked off Drew 14-6 on Monday at home on Senior Day.
“We have to win,” he said. “We are not guaranteed a spot in the playoffs just yet so, we have to go out there and win.”
Northgate and Union Grove are in a tie for the third and fourth region playoff spots with 12-5 records.
Union Grove helped its cause Monday with a 5-4 victory over McIntosh. The Vikings and the Wolverines split the regular season meetings with Union Grove knocking off Northgate 13-0 last Thursday so the final state playoff berths could come down to tiebreakers.
The Vikings close out their schedule with three road games against Mundy’s Mill on Wednesday, Mt. Zion-Jonesboro on Thursday, and Creekside on Friday. All three teams are out of the playoff race in 4-AAAAA with sub .500 records.
Union Grove plays region games this week against Ola, Mt. Zion and Mundy’s Mill.
Northgate spotted Drew a 1-0 lead in the top of the first and then blew the game open with eight runs in the bottom half of the inning after sending 11 men to the plate.
Chase Allen knocked in three runs with a double and senior James Poropatic ripped a three-run homer on his second trip to the plate in the inning while pushing the Vikings further ahead 8-1.
The Vikings added a run in the second, four in the third and one in the fifth.
Northgate led 14-3 after four innings and appeared ready to end the game with the five-run mercy rule before Drew kept the contest going with three runs in the top of the five against several Viking reserves.
Buddy Green picked up the win for the Vikings, pitching four innings striking out seven, walking one and giving up five hits.
Isiah Cook pitched for the first time in relief for the Vikings throwing three innings and striking out one.
“Buddy pitched a really good game for us,” Hamilton said. “Isiah threw the ball well too. He didn’t get a lot of help. We made some errors and that hurt.”
Mark Hawkins took the loss for Drew, pitching just ? of an inning and giving up eight runs and nine hits.
Northgate out-hit Drew 16-9 en route to the win.
Poropatic led the Vikings’ offense with three hits, three runs scored and three RBIs.
Chase Allen also drove in three runs.
Armand Upshaw was 4-for-4 with two RBIs. Kyle Feldbauer also finished with two RBIs.
Khari Richards and Matthew Colbert each had an RBI for Drew.
The Titans rallied with three unearned runs in the fifth when Duke Reed, Brandon Pearson and Mason Williams reached and scored after three errors Viking errors.
Three Drew runners reached base in the seventh, before Northgate got out of the inning with a force out and two flyouts to end the game.
VIKINGS 14, TITANS 6
DREW 111 030 0—6 9 5
NORTHGATE 814 110 X—14 16 5
WP — Buddy Green
LP — Mark Hawkins
HR — James Poropatic