Bowling Green looks to ride momentum into state tournament
LEXINGTON—An excruciatingly tough schedule in the early part of the season made Bowling Green hover right at and below the .500 mark in March and early April, but the Purples now enter the Whitaker Bank/KHSAA State Baseball Tournament in Lexington with plenty of momentum.
Bowling Green—champions of Region Four and winners in 13 out of its last 16 games—will play 11th Region champion Madison Central at 8:30 p.m. E.T. Friday at Whitaker Bank Ballpark. The Purples outscored their three opponents in the Fourth Region Tournament by a combined score of 35-2—shutting out 13th District champion Logan County and 16th District champion Russell County.
The Purples are led by senior Will Garske, who is batting .423 with a team-high 37 runs batted in on the year. Bowling Green has five other starters—Evan Spader, Joe Howard, Jay Buser, Eli Burwash, Trevor Dennis and Eli Thurman—who are batting above the .300 mark, and the power bats of Dennis, Thurman and Howard have each slugged at least four home runs on the season.
Pitching-wise the Purples have several weapons in their arsenal but are led by senior Ben Ginter, who owns a 6-3 record with a 2.94 ERA on the year. Junior Jackson Haga is 4-0 with a 1.02 ERA while sophomore Charlie Key is 3-1 with a 1.45 ERA.
A player that has been excelling recently for Bowling Green is sophomore Geoffrey Ross. Ross allowed just two runs on five hits and one walk while striking out six in a 12-2 win over Cumberland County in the Region Four Tournament semifinals, and he carried the momentum into the title game the next night against Russell County—slugging two triples and driving in three runs in a 14-0 blowout win over the Lakers.
But Madison Central has also been clicking on all cylinders as of late as the Indians have won 10 games in a row—including an 8-6 win over Scott County to claim the region title. The Indians are led by senior shortshop Logan Thomason, who leads the team with a .448 batting average, 38 runs batted in, 45 runs scored and 23 stolen bases on the year.
First pitch between the Indians and Purples is slated for 8:30 p.m. E.T. at Whitaker Bank Ballpark in Lexington.