It wasn’t the effort LaGrange High coach Todd Herrington was hoping for.
After Monday’s winning performance against Central-Carroll, the Grangers returned home on Tuesday to face Brookstone.
The game started out poorly for the Grangers (4-7), who gave up four runs in the first inning, and it didn’t get much better the rest of the way en route to an 8-2 loss.
After the game ended, Herrington had the players run a little more than usual, and during the post-game talk he made sure to let them know he wasn’t pleased.
“I didn’t see a good look after that first inning, and it kind of went down from there,” Herrington said. “There were times when we tried to show some intensity, but it wasn’t there today.”
Herrington said his message to the players was that they need to bring a certain level of energy and effort to the field every day.
Herrington said past successful teams at LaGrange “have had that intensity every day, and were just blue collar. That’s what this team has to be.”
LaGrange has one game remaining before it begins its Region 5-AAAA schedule on March 21 against Shaw.
The Grangers have played a strong non-region schedule that included four games in the LaGrange Toyota Invitational.
“We don’t schedule weak teams,” Herrington said. “We do that so we can get exposed to our weaknesses.”
Brookstone, which improved to 6-2, played a terrific game on Tuesday.
The Cougars had solid pitching, they had some big hits including a home run, and they didn’t have any errors.
“I give them tons of credit,” Herrington said. “They swing it really well. And they beat us. They took advantage of every opportunity.”
The Grangers, meanwhile, had seven hits, and they had chances to score runs in just about every inning
LaGrange only managed single runs in the third and fifth innings, though.
“If we could have had a timely hit or two there it would have been a different outcome,” Herrington said. “But that didn’t happen.”
Brookstone jumped out to a 4-0 lead after the first inning, and it was on top 7-0 after scoring three more runs in the top of the second.
The Grangers pushed a run across in their half of the third inning.
Logan Moody walked, Jake Howard reached on an infield single, and with two outs, Jackson Shelnutt knocked in a run with a base hit.
Brookstone went up 8-1 on a Drew Webb solo home run in the fourth inning.
LaGrange scored its final run in the bottom of the fifth.
Moody doubled, Howard reached on a single, and John Patterson drove in a run with a sacrifice fly.
Howard and Sam Hacker both did a nice job in relief of Logan Hood, but the Grangers were unable to overcome the big early deficit.
LaGrange will host Newnan on Monday.