MOUNT BERRY, Ga. - Second-ranked LaGrange came from six runs down to beat Berry 13-6 in a non-conference game Thursday night. The win gave the Panthers, now 21-3, a sweep of the two-game season series from the Vikings (21-9).
Berry got a run in the first and another in the second. The Vikings, with the help of an LC error, jumped out to a 6-0 lead with a four-run third inning.
The Panthers got outstanding relief pitching over the final six innings. Jacob Brown (3-0) got the final out of the third, then gave up just one hit and struck out four over the next three innings to get credited with the win. Tanner Chafin threw a scoreless seventh and eighth inning, allowing two hits. Cal Fuller pitched out of a bases loaded jam in the ninth to close out the win.
LC started its comeback in the fourth. Cael Chatham led off the inning with a walk and came around to score on Nate Darwin's single. Rhett Hebert and Rhett Mixon added run-scoring base hits to cut Berry's lead to 6-3.
Ruth drew the Panthers within a run in the sixth inning. With two outs, Erves walked. Ruth followed with his team-leading fifth home run over the right field fence to make it 6-5.
The Panthers continued to make things happen with two outs in the seventh. Rhett Hebert struck out but reached first as the pitch got away to keep the inning going. Gabriel Pallo and Mixon walked to load the bases. Erves delivered a two-run single to put LC up for the first time, 7-6. Ruth's infield hit brought home Mixon to make it 8-6.
LC put the game out of reach with a five-run ninth inning. Chatham drove in the first two runs with a double to left center and later scored on a wild pitch for the third run. With runners on second and third, Hebert reached on a two-out error that allowed both runners to score and the Panthers led 13-6.
The Panthers are on the road for a three-game USA South series at Brevard. The two teams play a doubleheader Saturday and a single game Sunday.