Sonic Drive-In Player-of-the-Game for April 24 – Grant Grodi (Forest)
The Sonic Drive-In Player-of-the-Game for Tuesday, April 24, is Grant Grodi of the Forest (Ocala) baseball team.
The senior had two hits, including a two-run homer over the right field fence in the first inning, and scored three runs as Forest pounded Gainesville 16-0 in 4 innings on Tuesday afternoon at Goodlett Field on the College of Central Florida campus.
Grodi hit his second homer of the season in the first to give the Wildcats a 2-0 lead. Jacob Harward followed with the first of his three hits in the game later in the opening inning to drive home Tyler Waddell with two outs to extend the Forest lead to 3-0.
After going 1-2-3 in the 2nd, Forest pounced on Gainesville starter Luke Marquis in the third inning, scoring 10 runs on 7 hits.
Fifteen batters came to the plate, highlighted by Sterlin Thompson with a 2-RBI single. Harward added another 2-run single as well and Waddell drove in a run with a single as well.
Marquis walked in two runs with the bases loaded and hit another batter to bring in another Forest run. Grodi reached base twice on a single and fielders choice and scored both times in the frame.
By the time the 3rd inning was over, Forest led Gainesville 13-0. With mostly pinch-hitters batting in the bottom of the 4th, Dylan Nowlin ended the game by run-rule with a three-run homer over the right field fence off the Hurricanes’ Payton Weinberg.
Forest ended a four-game losing streak and improves to 15-7 on the season. The Wildcats, who had been struggling at the plate the last two weeks, broke out of the slump with 11 hits against Gainesville.
JJ Finn pitched four scoreless innings, allowing four hits, walking one and striking out three to improve to 6-1 on the season.
Forest finishes off their regular season Thursday night at home against Seabreeze (Daytona Beach) on Senior Night, before hosting the District 3-8A tournament next week as the #2 seed behind top-seeded Buchholz (Gainesville).
Gainesville has dropped three games in a row and eight of 11 and falls below .500 for the first time this season at 11-12.
The Hurricanes host Belleview for Senior Night on Friday night, before hosting 4th-seeded Vanguard (Ocala) in the District 3-7A tournament next Tuesday as the #1 seed.
Every game The Prep Zone will recognize a Player-of-the-Game. The recipient receives a $10 gift certificate courtesy of Sonic Drive-In of Gainesville & Ocala.