Russellville baseball team wins Gulf Coast Classic
The No. 1-ranked in Class 5A Russellville Golden Tigers have won 10-straight varsity baseball games – and they can now include Gulf Coast Classic champions on their list of accomplishments so far in the 2021 season.
RUSSELLVILLE 11, COTTAGE HILL 0
RHS opened spring break trip with an 11-0 win over Cottage Hill Christian Academy of Mobile. Jackson Lindsey went 3-for-3 with two doubles, three RBIs and three runs scored. Cole Barnett hit a home run and picked up two RBIs. Eli Gipson, Ethan Oliver, Nick Smith, Gordon White, Karson Hyde, Shayden Romans, JD Bishop and Banks Langston also hit safely for Russellville.
Samuel Pace got the win, pitching four innings of the five-inning contest. He struck out six, issued no walks and allowed two hits.
Casen Heaps worked the game’s final frame, and he struck out a batter.
RUSSELLVILLE 9, DECATUR 1
Russellville defeated Decatur by a 9-1 score at the Gulf Shores Sportsplex March 30.
Barnett led the way to victory, going 3-for-3 with a double, two RBIs and two runs. Lindsey had two hits, including a triple, and Grayson Thorpe also had two hits. Rowe Gallagher got the start and the win, going five innings and striking out 10. The senior allowed an unearned run, two hits and no walks.
Reed Hill and Casen Heaps pitched an inning each of scoreless relief.
RUSSELLVILLE 4, GORDONSVILLE 1
The second game of the day for RHS was a 4-1 victory over Gordonsville.
Gordon White pitched a complete game, striking out nine. He gave up three hits and no walks while throwing 86 pitches.
Lindsey and Thorpe had three hits apiece, with Lindsey picking up a triple and Thorpe driving in two runs. Canyon Pace had a hit and an RBI, and Hill added two hits and a walk.
RUSSELLVILLE 7, ENTERPRISE 0
It took two days to finish Russellville’s 7-0 win over Enterprise because of the weather. Emitt Green and Ethan Oliver combined to pitch the shutout. Green allowed one hit and struck out three, and Oliver gave up two hits and struck out seven.
Gipson led the way at the plate with two hits and two runs. Smith and Casen Heaps picked up two RBIs apiece.
RUSSELLVILLE 7, DECATUR 1
The tournament wrapped up April 1, and RHS defeated Decatur again, this time in the semifinals by a 7-1 score.
Gipson, Smith and Thorpe had two hits each, while Canyon Pace and Thorpe had two RBIs apiece.
Banks Langston got the start and the win on the mound; he struck out five and allowed five hits and a run during 5.1 innings.
Casen Heaps followed in relief and allowed no hits or walks, and he struck out three.
RUSSELLVILLE 8, SMITHS STATION 5
Russellville took down Smiths Station by an 8-5 score in the championship game.
Samuel Pace got the start and the win on the mound. He allowed no runs and four hits while striking out four and walking two over six innings.
Hill pitched the game’s final inning.
Canyon Pace had two hits, including a double and an RBI. Barnett added two hits, an RBI and a run scored, while Gipson and Thorpe also had a hit each and both drove in a run apiece.
“We pitched well,” said Russellville head coach Chris Heaps of his team’s performance in the tournament. “We didn’t walk guys, we threw strikes, and they put the ball in play, and we made plays and kept putting up zeros.”
The Golden Tigers returned home April 3 and defeated Arab by an 8-1 score and Alcorn Central, Mississippi, by an 11-0 total to improve the RHS record to 24-4 on the season.
Lindsey had three hits against Arab and three RBIs. Smith and Gipson added two hits apiece with Smith picking up a double and two RBIs. Green pitched three innings and struck out five, allowing no runs and a hit, and he was followed by Hill, who struck out six over four innings of work.
Canyon Pace had two hits, including a triple, against Alcorn Central. He had two RBIs, as did Smith and Thorpe. Hill drove in a run, and Andrew Hatton added an RBI single.
Gallagher got the win, going three innings and striking out six. White finished the game with three strike outs over two innings. The duo allowed one hit apiece and no walks.