Some games, the ball just doesn’t break your way.
Unfortunately for the Salem Seminoles varsity baseball team, the ball broke every which way for the visiting Gainesville Red Elephants Wednesday night.
Leading 1-0 after the first inning, the Red Elephants pounded their way to 18 runs in the second frame, scoring batter after batter on 11 hits, seven walks and four home runs, including a pair from outfielder Anthony Carrera.
Salem used four different pitchers in the inning to no avail, as Gainesville batted around twice in the inning, at one point putting 20 consecutive batters on the base path.
The Red Elephants’ scoring stretch began with Carrera smacking his first homer over the right field fence before ending on a Drew Wright strikeout. In-between, Gainesville’s relentless offensive attack struck a decisive blow, allowing the Red Elephants to hold onto their second place spot in the region.
After Carerra’s blast to right, Fedrick Cardona reach on a double to right and Wright moved him to third on a bunt down the third baseline. Wright was able to beat the throw to first, putting runners at the corners for Griffith Sims.
Sims, who plated the Red Elephants’ first run of the game on a solo shot to left field on Salem starter Tiwuan Head’s second pitch of the game, extended Gainesville’s lead to 3-0 with a single to left, sending Cardona home.
A Luke Maddox walk loaded the bases, and Gainesville senior Michael Gettys took advantage, blasting a grand slam over the left field fence for the Red Elephants’ second homer of the frame.
Head remained in the game for the Seminoles, but was pulled after surrendering back-to-back singles to the Red Elephants Michael Curry and Caleb Whitenton.
With one out, Cole Gibson entered the game for Salem, but Gibson couldn’t find the plate, walking all four batters he faced in the inning. Gibson was pulled with Gainesville leading 10-0, giving Salem junior Jordan Scott a shot at the Red Elephants’ line-up.
Scott walked the first two batters he faced before plunking Gettys, pushing Gainesville’s lead to 13-0.
Scott gave up a two-RBI single to Curry before Whitenton knocked in a 3-run homer to dead center. Brandon Sewell sent a single into left field, ending Scott’s night with the Red Elephants leading 17-0.
Ndiayemon Harrison took over mound duties for Scott and Carrera touched him up for a 2-run blast, his second of the inning, extending Salem’s lead to 19-0. The two-run score was the last for the Red Elephants, as Harrison struck out Wright and forced a fly out, ending the inning.
Salem was unable to must a comeback, going three up, three down in the second inning before putting just one batter on base in the third on a Gainesville error.
The game was called after three innings, giving Head the loss after the senior surrendered nine runs on 11 hits and a walk.
Whitenton earned the win for Gainesville, allowing just one hit and a walk in two innings of work.
Salem’s lone hit came from lead-off hitter Akil Baddoo. Baddoo knocked down a double in the opening frame. Scott joined Baddoo on the base path with a walk, but Salem stranded both runners in the inning.
Salem returns to action Friday at home against Cedar Shoals.