Brookwood beats defending state champ Parkview again

Photo: Craig Cappy Brookwood catcher Clint Carr tags out Parkview's A.J. Davis (18) at the plate during Monday's game.

Photo: Craig Cappy Brookwood catcher Clint Carr tags out Parkview's A.J. Davis (18) at the plate during Monday's game.


Photo: Craig Cappy Brookwood's Zach Moon (14) safely gets back to first as Parkview's Matt Olson (21) tries to gain control of the ball during Monday's game.


Photo: Craig Cappy Parkview's Edwin Arias (7) bunts in the first inning as Brookwood catcher Clint Carr attempts to catch the ball during Monday's game.


Photo: Craig Cappy Brookwood pitcher Lucas Sims (26) throws during the Broncos' game against Parkview on Monday night.

LILBURN -- Brookwood's chances of locking up a home playoff baseball game improved on Monday.

The No. 10-ranked Broncos beat defending state champion Parkview 7-3 at Hugh Buchanan Field.

The victory put the Broncos in position to lock up the No. 2 spot if it can beat No. 4-ranked Grayson on Wednesday.

"This means a lot, the rivalry means a lot," Brookwood coach Rick Howard said. "When you look at the big picture, Wednesday just became a big game, but we had to win this one to get there."

No. 1 Parkview will have to wait another week to win its third straight Region 8-AAAAA championship. The Panthers need victories over Berkmar and South Gwinnett to end the season. The state playoffs start next Friday.

"We got outplayed tonight," Parkview coach Chan Brown said. "They came in and did what they needed to. Lucas (Sims) pitched great."

The Broncos got the win thanks to the strong arm of pitcher Lucas Sims and a four-run third inning.

Sims, a Clemson signee, pitched a complete game, allowing three hits and two runs. He struck out 10.

"We were facing a kid that may go in the first or second round (of the MLB draft)," Brown said. "We have to find a way to manufacture runs."

Brookwood won the last time the two teams met on April 14. Parkview had a 2-0 lead going into the bottom of the sixth when the Broncos had a five-run inning, led by Cedric Mullins' homer.

"They've got the best of us the past few years, so it was nice to beat them twice this year," Sims said.

Brookwood showed the comeback two weeks ago was no fluke on Monday.

Parkview starter Mac Marshall began the third inning by walking the first three batters he faced. Jesse Foster came in for relief and gave up an RBI single to Ryan Woodard, who was 3-for-4 for the day. Sims followed with a two-run double to give Brookwood a 3-2 lead. Clint Carr reached on an error and Sims scored to make it 4-2.

"You want to take what you can when you're in those situations," Howard said. "Our kids stepped up."

Michael Gouge added another run in the fourth with a two-out RBI double to right centerfield to score Mullins. Gouge was 2-for-3 with a walk, RBI and two runs scored.

"He had a big night," Howard said.

Brookwood put the game away when Mullins hit a solo homer off Foster to start the sixth. Gouge doubled and Woodward drove him in with a double for a 7-2 lead.

Foster was pulled after pitching 3 innings and allowing eight hits and four runs.

"It seemed like they had everything going for them and we didn't," Brown said.

Hunter Thornton relieved Foster and got Parkview out of the inning. Thornton retired all three batters he faced in the seventh.

Sims was nearly flawless nearly the entire game. His only slip-up was in the second inning. Parkview's Jack Esmonde had a single up the middle and Ryan Blanton walked. A.J. Davis drove in Esmonde with a single. Rob Youngblood followed by striking out swinging and Blanton and Davis stole third and second, respectively. The throw to second went over the bag and Blanton was able to score, while Davis was tagged out at home.

"Early on, he was missing some pitches," Howard said. "He has thrown great late in games and that's what matters."

From there, Sims never faced more than three batters except in the sixth inning. Edwin Arias walked to start the inning and Jarrett Freeland drove him in to make it a 7-3 game.

Sims struck out three of the next five batters he faced to end the game.

"They knew what they had to do try and win a region championship or lock up a No. 2 spot," Brown said.