TAMPA — Gaither handed Jefferson (9-1) its first loss of the season Tuesday night with the best hitting performance of the Cowboys' season in a 10-5 victory.
Gaither finished with 14 hits as seven players got more than one hit.
"Everybody got a little piece of the pie tonight," Gaither coach Frank Permuy said. "We've been grinding out close games so it was good to get the bats going tonight. We've been working hard on hitting and trying to jell offense and defense together into a solid package."
Junior pitcher Alex Milne turned in a crucial performance for the Cowboys (8-1), giving up three runs in four innings while striking out four. It took close to 100 pitches to get through the four innings as Milne had to battle his way out of difficult situations.
After allowing a home run in the second inning that tied the score at 2, Milne kept his head down and continued to work.
"This win is really good for us as a team," Milne said. "It just reinforces that mentality of never give up. After I gave up the home run I just tried to stay calm and work on the next hitter. That's the only thing I could control."
With a busy schedule of games coming up for his team, Permuy is hoping the offense is coming alive at a crucial moment in the season as the Saladino Tournament approaches.
"Hopefully we're unloading the bats at the right time and we can keep it going," Permuy said. "It takes some luck to win the Saladino, but hopefully we can stay hot. The pitching has been good all year; we just need the bats to go along with it like they did tonight."
No-hitter for Phoenix: Brenden Rivera hit three home runs and combined with Riley Crispell on a no-hitter as Brooks-DeBartolo defeated host Lakeland Sonrise Christian 30-0. Adam Eggnatz homered twice, and Javier Reynoso and Torey Jordan also went deep for Brooks.