Chandler Dawson’s walk-off single proved to be the decider in Houston County’s 3-2 win in eight innings over Valdosta Friday at home.
Chandler Ring (0-3) started the inning off with a walk. Dillon Toms (0-4) attempted to sacrifice him over with a bunt. He was successful – in fact reaching himself when it was misplayed. Dylan Tabor (0-2) then walked to load them before Dawson (2-4) sent a 2-2 offering between the infielders for the game winner.
The Bears – now 11-4 overall and 1-0 in 1-AAAAAA – scored their first run in the first. Jacob Profit started the inning with a single. He got to second when Cameron Jones (0-2) was hit by a pitch and then with two outs scored on Logan Morris’ single. (Morris finishing 1-4.)
The Wildcats – 11-2 overall, 1-1 in 1-AAAAAA – answered that via Colby Thomas’ homerun in the third. After three goose eggs by both – Jones on the mound for the Bears (four innings) and Avery Stephens for Valdosta (six and a third) – the Wildcats went on top with a run in the seventh. It came without the benefit of a hit – a walk, then following two outs, another walk, a hit batsman and another walk.
Houston County then carved one out to tie it in the bottom half of the inning. Pinch hitter Jaden Woods walked, then with one out, Profit again singled – he finished 3-4. With two outs, Jones then hit a ground ball that was unable to be fielded – the error in turn enabling Woods to get in.
The Wildcats went three-up, three-down in the eighth – the last two of those were strikeouts by Ring, who came in in relief. (Dawson also worked two and two-thirds in between, only giving up a hit, striking out four and walking four.) That in turn set the table for King’s heroics to end it.
Elsewhere, Northside and Lee County locked together for a similar pitcher’s duel. Dylan Franks worked seven innings for the Eagles. The Trojans used two pitchers: Layne Wiard (five innings) and Matt Cooper (two innings).
Between them they gave up nine hits. Unfortunately for Northside and its hopeful fans Lee County made the better of theirs. (Both also left six on base.) It was able to get a run across in the third and one for insurance in the seventh.
The Eagles also committed three errors. Two came into play in regard to the runs scored – although a walk and a hits batsman in the seventh was also plenty costly.
For the Trojans, the win enabled them to improve to 12-4 overall, 1-0 in 1-AAAAAA. Northside in turn fell to 3-9, 0-2.
Also, Veterans swept Bainbridge on the road. The Warhawks won the first 7-0 and the nightcap 4-1. They improved to 5-0 in 1-AAAAA, 12-4 overall. The Bearcats in turn fell to 1-4, 4-7.
Warner Robins can emphathize with Bainbridge, as it was swept by Harris County. The Tigers won the first of their doubleheader 13-1 and the second 12-2.
They improved to 5-1 in 1-AAAAA, 12-4 overall, while the Demons are still chasing their first win. They dropped to 0-6, 0-10.