Demopolis drops Thomasville 7-4

Jacob Rodrigues takes a cut.

Jacob Rodrigues takes a cut.

Demopolis used a five-run third inning and stellar relief pitching to down Thomasville 7-4 Monday night.

Demopolis gave up a pair of runs in the top half of the second inning before Wil Stephens scored on a Seth Aiken single in the bottom of the frame.

Demopolis broke the game open in the third when it sent nine batters to the plate and scored five runs.

Demopolis tied the game when Jacob Rodrigues hit a rocket that ricocheted off the foot of the Thomasville pitcher and trickled into open space. Rodrigues beat the play to the bag. During the fracas, Jamarcus Ezell sped home from second on the play.

Demopolis took the lead when Jay Craig stroked a single to right that plated Jordan Grace and Matthew Trest.. Tripp Perry later drove in Stephens and Craig with a single that left DHS up 6-1.

“I think what got it started was when we moved runners up a couple of times with bunts, had a couple of bunt hits. Guys did a good job of moving the ball and it ended up getting hits for us. That momentum just started rolling,” Demopolis coach James Moody said of the big inning. “I saw several more swings tonight where guys tried to let the ball travel a little bit and hit the ball the other way and we got on some fastballs. It was a much better effort altogether and the competiveness was a lot higher than it has been being.”

After Thomasville cut its deficit to 6-4, Demopolis added an insurance run in the sixth when Rodrigues singled to left to drive in Ezell.

R.J. Cox (1) worked three innings for the save while Luke Yelverton (3-2) got the win in relief.

Yelverton tossed two innings, allowing no hits and walking two while striking out one. Cox tossed three innings, scattered two hits, walked two and struck out three.

“Outstanding. The only thing that got us was bases on balls. They got us in trouble. I tell them everyday, ‘You can’t cover that. You can’t cover it.’ It’s a freebie. But an outstanding job,” Moody said. “They hit some balls right at us. We had a big double play to end the inning in the fifth, I believe. It was just a good night for the Tigers.”

Cox made his first impression on the game by leaving the Thomasville bases loaded in the fifth when he induced a line drive into the glove of shortstop Ryan Schroeder, who flipped to second baseman Ezell to complete the twin killing and end the inning.

Moody credited the Demopolis fans for helping to elevate the energy level of his team.

“The crowd was really good tonight. I think it just keeps their energy level up. I really felt like our crowd played a big factor tonight,” he said.

Schroeder was 1-for-4 in the game. Ezell scored two runs. Rodrigues went 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Stephens finished 2-for-3 with two runs scored. Craig went 2-for-3 with two RBIs and a run scored. Perry was 1-for-2 with two RBIs. Aiken went 1-for-3 with one RBI.

The Tigers are set to play again Friday when it hosts area foe Dallas County.

“I certainly hope it starts something and it builds on itself. I tell them all the time we need to stay even keeled and not be up and down,” Moody said.M”aybe some guys are starting to buy in a little more to what we’re trying to do. My hope is that they keep caring about each other, keep loving each other and play with class. I thought we did that tonight.”