MOUNTAIN BROOK — "We donated that one."
Gardendale coach Pat Keedy was not in the best of moods, after seeing his Rockets lose a four-run lead to Mountain Brook in the second game of Saturday's first-round playoff doubleheader.
After Gardendale took a 6-2 lead on an opportunistic five-run rally in the bottom of the fourth inning, Mountain Brook responded with a five-run outburst of their own in the top of the sixth to take a 7-6, which held up as the final score.
The loss came after the Rockets jumped on the Spartans early in the opening game, scoring three runs in the first inning on their way to a 4-2 win.
The split twin-bill means that the two teams will face off in the rubber game of the best-of-three series Monday at 5 p.m. at Mountain Brook. (The series was delayed from its original Friday-Saturday schedule by rain.)
In the first game, Gardendale (24-14) jumped out to a quick lead with a lead-off double by John Michael Matthews plus a pair of walks to load the bases. Adam Hulsey drove in a run with a hit, followed by a sacrifice fly by Jacob Hallmark and another run-scoring single by Brady Sellers.
The Rockets added a run in the sixth when Zac Cupps scored on a double play.
Drew Odom got on board with a double in the first inning for Mountain Brook, and scored on another double by J.D. Kubiszyn. Their other run came in the fourth when Kubiszyn scored on a double play.
In the nightcap, the Spartans got out to a 2-1 lead, thanks to runs that were forced home on bases-loaded walks, Gardendale got their run in the second when Hulsey scored on an error, as Cupps's grounder to shortstop was misplayed.