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Baseball: Longhorns split with Lowndes, will play Thursday
Lambert senior Braden Bamburowski delivers a pitch Wednesday during Game 1 of the Longhorns' doubleheader against Lowndes in the Class 7A Elite Eight. Photo courtesy Tim Morse

VALDOSTA — Lambert topped Lowndes 4-2 in Game 2 of Wednesday's doubleheader, forcing a decisive Game 3 at 2:30 p.m. Thursday at Lowndes High School.

The Longhorns dropped the first game 6-1 after the Vikings scored in each of the first two innings, then used a four-run sixth inning to pull away. 

Jonny Smith went 2-for-4 with an RBI in the loss, while Parker Brosius reached base twice on a pair of walks from the leadoff position. Colin Linder and Braden Bamburowski each had one hit, and Bradley Gabriel added a pinch-hit single in the top of the seventh.

Bamburowski fired five innings of four-run ball — three earned — striking out five and walking four. Ashton Smith pitched one inning of relief and surrendered two runs — one earned — on two hits.

Sage O'Berry led Lowndes at the plate, finishing 3-for-4 with two RBIs, including RBI singles in the first and sixth innings to account for the Vikings' first and final runs of the game.

Lambert struck back in Game 2, as Linder tallied 10 strikeouts in a complete-game four-hitter. 

Justin Haskins and Will Nelson each collected two hits and an RBI, with Smith adding an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth inning.

Haskins' single in the third scored Brosius and tied the game 1-1, then an infield error off the bat of Gabriel and an RBI single by Nelson increased the Longhorns' lead to 3-1.

McCage Pruitt launched a solo home run in the top of the sixth, but Lambert answered in the bottom half with Smith's bases-loaded walk.

Linder fired four 1-2-3 innings, striking out the side in the third and retiring the Vikings in order in the seventh to propel Lambert to Game 3.

The winner of Thursday's game between Lambert and Lowndes will travel to Parkview next week in the Class 7A Final Four after the Panthers eliminated Denmark on Tuesday.