Griffins blow out Johnson, North Central in Westwood Invitational

BLYTHEWOOD – Under new head coach Larry Perry, the Griffins got off to a hot start against CA Johnson to open pool play in Westwood’s first annual National Restoration Brokerage Invitational.

With Adam Gonzalez on the mound, CA Johnson put up two runs in the top of the first, but the Griffins’ hot bats quickly retook the lead.

The scoring fest started in the first inning with a Blake Gambrell single to right field. Jonathan Warren followed with a walk. Two wild pitches later, Gambrell and Warren scored. LJ Holley followed with a walk and advanced to second on a fielding error, then third on a wild pitch. Gonzalez walked to put runners on the corners. Holley scored on another wild pitch. A triple from Curtis Sampson scored Gonzalez, and another wild pitch plated Sampson to put the Griffins up 5-2.

Two more walks and a Cialen Gadson triple made it 8-2 Griffins with only one out in the bottom of the first. Three more walks and a handful of passed balls extended the lead to 10-2 before CA Johnson escaped the inning with a strikeout and a pickoff.

Gonzalez and the Griffins got the Green Hornets out of the dugout with a quick three outs.

More walks, errors and passed balls put the Griffins up 14-2 after two innings of play. A 3-RBI walk-off double by Gambrell clinched the game via mercy rule with an 18-2 final in the third inning.

In his three short innings of work, Gonzalez faced 13 batters to pick up the win. He allowed two hits and two runs, walked three, and struck out 7.

The Griffins had four multi-base hitters in the win: Gadson and Sampson had triples; Holly and Gambrell each hit doubles. Gambrell (3) Tydarion Grier (2) Graeme Douglas (2) Holley, Gadson and Warren all tallied stolen bases in the win.

Fairfield faced North Central in Tuesday’s pool play game.

Tied at three in the top of the sixth, Fairfield plated seven runs to clinch a 9-3 win over the Knights. Gonzalez, Gadson and Warren all tallied hits in the sixth inning.

Woodard earned the win over North Central for the Griffins. The righthander went five innings, allowing three runs on five hits and striking out ten.

Holley and Gadson led at the plate for the Fairfield Central; the team had eight hits in the game. Holley had two doubles; Warren also doubled. Gonzalez and Gadson each stole a base.

The Griffins faced Westwood in a third pool play game on Wednesday, but scores were not available at press time. The game was previously scheduled for Monday, but was delayed because of weather conditions. The championship round of the invitational will be played today.

Up next, Fairfield Central will travel to Lower Richland on Tuesday and will host CA Johnson for their home opener on March 10 at 6:30 p.m., followed by Lower Richland at home on March 11 at 7 p.m.

CAJH – 2-0-0-X-X-X-X – 2, 2, 4

FCHS – 10-4-4-X-X-X-X – 18, 8, 0

WP: Gonzalez; LP: Jacobs

HITTERS: Gambrell 2-3 2B; Gadson 1-2, 3B; Sampson 1-2, 3B; Holley 1-1, 2B;  Warren 1-1; Woodard 1-1; Douglas 1-1

FCHS – 0-0-0-2-0-7-X – 9, 8, 4

NCHS – 0-0-0-1-2-X-X – 3, 5, 4

WP: Woodard; LP: Smith

HITTERS: Holley 2-4, 2B(2); Gadson 2-4; Warren 1-2, 2B; Gonzalez 1-3; Sampson 1-3; Woodard 1-3

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