Broncos rally past Rams

LOGANVILLE - After digging itself into a 5-0 hole, Brookwood broke out its comeback shoes Tuesday night to post a 7-6 win in eight innings over Region 8-AAAAA rival Grayson.

Brookwood, which snapped a five-game losing skid with 5-0 win over Central Gwinnett in its last game, looked to be down and out in this one but rallied to improve its record to 10-7 overall and 2-1 in the region.

"We've been in a slump and we needed something to pick us up," Brookwood starter Brandi Jones said. "It showed us that we can never give up."

Grayson led 5-0 after five innings when Brookwood began to claw its way back with a pair of runs in the sixth on an RBI triple from Rachel Rhodes and an RBI single from Rachel Hill.

Trailing 5-2 headed into the seventh, the Broncos took the lead with four runs, getting a two-run double from Susan Norris to cut the lead to 5-4, a game-tying RBI single from Mandy Blackwell while Jenny Blackwell scored the go-ahead run off an error.

Grayson (10-5, 1-1) answered in the bottom half when Kanani Cabrales led off the inning with a solo home run to left, her second of the year, to tie the game at 7-7 and send it to extra innings.

Jessica Neidigh put Brookwood back up 8-7 in the eighth inning with a two-out double to left to score Hill, but it was starter Jones who bared down in the bottom half to seal the win.

Grayson started off the eighth with Savanna Berkhiser at second, who quickly went to third on a passed ball. With a runner at third and no one out, Jones coaxed Lauren Moore into an infield pop out, struck out Rebecca Seasholtz and retired Taylor Denton on a groundout to short.

"Last week, we just weren't getting the big hits when we needed it and it was good to see that tonight," Brookwood head coach Bill Batchelor said. "All thirteen players had a role in this one and I am very proud of them. Our kids never quit and that's all we can ask of them."

Jones (8-4) sat down the first Grayson hitter she faced before the Rams struck for two runs in the third, getting an RBI single from Georgia Tech commit Hayley Downs while scoring another on a throwing error.

The lead expanded to 3-0 in the fourth with another unearned run while the Rams appeared to take control with two more in the fifth, getting an RBI single from Shelby Smith and another run off a wild pitch.

Cabrales, who pitched all eight innings for Grayson, had been solid on the mound before running into trouble in the sixth.

"We became more patient at the plate and started hitting the ball and got on a roll," Jones said. "We never gave up and really picked each other up."

Cabrales finished the night with 11 strikeouts in eight innings with eight hits, three walks and eight runs.

"She's a phenomenal freshman and we're very excited to have her with us," Grayson head coach Jennifer Edwards said. "She does everything we ask of her, both on the mound and at the plate."

Jones, who pitched the first four innings before being lifted for two innings by Neidigh, came back to pitch the last two, notching five strikeouts and four runs (two earned) on five hits and one walk.

Taylor Denton also had a good night for Grayson, going 3-for-5 with two runs while Smith finished 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run.

"This is one of the biggest rivalries around and everyone gets up for it," Edwards said. "We played our hearts out but couldn't come out on top. It hurts to lose but we'll see them again in the region tournament so we need to keep our heads up and get ready for that."