Forrest, Ellis blow past North in baseball action

Published 2:23 pm Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

By Brian Pitts

Enterprise Record

Brandon Forrest, a supremely talented seventh grader for Ellis’ baseball team, pitched a three-hitter and also blasted a homer to lead the Jaguars’ 10-2 rout over visiting North Davie on April 26.

The game closed the regular season and settled a score from the first meeting, when North beat Ellis 4-3.

The Jaguars ambushed North in the early innings, scoring three runs in the first and four in the second. Forrest had a big-time game, pitching 6.2 dominant innings and homering for the third time this season.

“Brandon pitched one heck of a game,” Ellis coach Mike Dinkins said. “And he had the longest home run I’ve seen hit at Ellis. It was in the top of the trees in left field. (In his previous at-bat), he told me he missed it by this much (on a flyout to deep center). He held his fingers close together.”

When Forrest isn’t pitching, he’s playing shortstop.

“His baseball IQ is probably the best of anyone who’s come through our program,” Dinkins said. “And his grades are A’s and B’s, mostly A’s.”

A sixth grader, third baseman Bowman Blakely, was a key contributor for Ellis. He went 2 for 4 with a bases-loaded triple in the second.

“Plus, he made five defensive plays,” Dinkins said. “I think he’s started six games.”

For North, it was far from an A-level game for a team that won 10 of 12. Tanner Steinour (1-3, RBI), Hayden Potts (1-2, RBI) and Jack Greer (1-2) had the only hits.

“We got down early and made too many errors,” coach Trevor Gooch said. “We had too many strikeouts. We’ve got to choke up more with two strikes and put the ball in play.

“I’m pleased we did not lay down and quit. We finally stopped the bleeding with some good pitching in relief and defense.”

Despite the loss, three relievers did well for North. Ellis did not score against Ian Patton (1.2 innings), Noah Potts (2/3) and Alex Bowles (2/3).

Notes: North (10-3) and Ellis (8-2) tied for second in the conference. … Easton Sanders relieved Forrest in the seventh and recorded the final out. … Dinkins said it could have been a shutout. “The two runs they scored should not have scored,” he said. “We dropped a routine flyball and one of my infielders missed a groundball that he usually doesn’t miss.”