E.A. Sports Today

Second-round bound

Pleasant Valley headed to rare second-round playoff series after jumping on Geraldine early in decisive Game 3

The Pleasant Valley players celebrate after beating Geraldine to reach the second round of the Class 3A baseball playoffs.

By East Alabama Sports Today

GERALDINE – During the final week of the regular season, right after they clinched a spot in the state playoffs, the Pleasant Valley baseball players watched workers construct a new scoreboard just beyond the left centerfield fence. The seniors wondered if they’d ever get a chance to light it.

PV coach Chris Youngman had a message for them: Win their first-round playoff series on the road and they would.

The Raiders get the chance to christen their new board next weekend after beating Geraldine 9-4 Saturday in the decisive Game 3 of their Class 3A playoff series. They host Elkmont in their first home playoff since in more than a decade.

“We were joking about it after the last game and I told them it’s not over,” Youngman said. “You can still put the first runs on that board. All you’ve got to do is get us back home.”

Brody Phillips struggled in his last two outings on the mound, but he pitched with confidence Saturday. He gave up four hits, two earned runs and struck out five before reaching his pitch limit in 5 2/3 innings. Jackson Almaroad “did a nice job” getting the final four outs without allowing a run.

The Raiders took control of the game with a six-run second inning that helped them open an 8-0 lead after three innings. Caden Turner’s sacrifice fly in the first inning gave PV a 1-0 lead, then the Raiders sent 11 batters to the plate in the second to break open the game.

Ashton King hit a two-run double and Alex Parris a two-run triple in the inning. Turner and Nick Howard both singled home a run.

“That gave us something to play for,” Nick Howard said of the scoreboard installation. “We wanted to get back home and play and get a win on that scoreboard. That’d be big for us seniors to get our first win on that scoreboard. The plan is to get the first one.”

Pleasant Valley 9, Geraldine 4
Geraldine 000 121 0 — 4 5 1
Pleasant Valley 161 001 x — 9 12 2

WP: Brody Phillips. LP: Noe Guevuara. 2B: Jordan Cookten (G), Luke Maddox (G), Nick Charping (PV), Dalton Payne (PV), Caden McCurdy (PV), Ashton King (PV). 3B: Justin Murphy (G), Alex Parris (PV). Hitting – Geraldine: Brady Gilbert 0-3; Will Jacobs 1-3, RBI; Justin Murphy 2-4; Jordan Cookten 1-4, run; Avery Byars 0-4, run, RBI; Peyton Mooney 0-3; Matthew Malone 0-2, run; Luke Maddox 1-2, run, RBI; Bret Armstrong 0-2, RBI. Pleasant Valley: Dakota Jones 2-4, 2 runs, RBI; Alex Parris 2-4, 2 runs, 2 RBIs; Caden Turner 1-2, run, 2 RBIs; Nick Charping 2-4, RBI; Nick Howard 1-3, RBI; Dalton Payne 1-2, run; Drew Bonds 0-4; Caden McCurdy 2-3, 2 runs; Ashton King, 1-3, run, 2 RBIs.

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