CLEVELAND — White County used a five-run second inning to back up the pitching of Jake Johnson in taking an 8-2 win over West Hall on Friday to win a key Region 7-3A series.
With the win the Warriors (16-7, 11-4 Region 7-3A) moved into a statistical tie with the Spartans (18-7, 11-4 Region 7-3A) but captured their best-of-three series 2-1 for the head-to-head tiebreaker. Both teams sit in second place behind North Hall.
Johnson went the distance scattering six hits and three walks. The only blemish came in the fourth when the Spartans’ Jackson Cooper drove in Jace Young and Ryan Svetz with a single to cut the lead to 7-2.
Johnson also had a huge day at the plate going 4-for-4, including a double, to lead a 12-hit Warriors attack.
Rylee Higgins had two hits and an RBI and Nate Bray had a hit and two RBI for White County. J. Ben Haynes, Kyler Mayo, Caleb Reddy, and Mark Daniels all had a hit and one RBI while Dylan Sargent had one hit for the Warriors.
Kyle Murphy had two hits and Braden Simms, Nick Sturm, and Evan Connor all had one hit for West Hall.
NORTH HALL 8,
CHEROKEE BLUFF 2
For the second straight game the Class 3A fifth-ranked Bears could not hold an early lead as the No. 2-ranked Trojans rallied to complete the sweep in their Region 7-3A series.
The win kept North Hall (17-4, 11-1 Region 7-3A) in first place while the loss for the Bears (15-8, 7-5 Region 7-3A) kept them in fourth place in the standings.
Bluff (15-8, 7-5 Region 7-3A) jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the first inning when Dylan Kautz scored on a Hunter Brooks wild pitch.
North Hall answered in the top of the second getting a RBI sacrifice fly from Tate Brooks and a RBI single from Jay Johnson. The Trojans added three more in the fourth on a two-run double from Jaret Bales and a RBI single from Bradford Puryear for a 5-1 lead.
The Bears got a run back in the fifth on a RBI double from Bryce England but North Hall put the game away with three in the sixth highlighted by consecutive RBI hits from Bales and Puryear.
After the shaky start, Hunter Brooks allowed just the two runs on two hits and striking out nine. Landon Davis pitched the final two innings, fanning four.
DAWSON COUNTY 8,
The Tigers completed a sweep of Gilmer on Friday, holding on for a Region 7-3A win on the road.
Dawson County (10-11, 4-8 Region 7-3A) trailed 2-0 after the first inning but scored a run in the second and took the lead for good in the fourth on a two-run single from Julian Horn and a RBI hit from Kinkade Weaver.
Dawson County added two runs each in the fifth and sixth to run out to an 8-2 lead.
But the Bobcats (4-18, 1-11 Region 7-3A) rallied with three runs in the sixth and added a run to get within 8-6. They had the tying run at the plate when Andrew Burt got the final out for the save.
Nick Mullinax got the win going 6 1/3 innings allowing three earned runs on eight hits and fanned four. Mullinax also had three hits and a pair of RBI for the Tigers.
Weaver, Luke Mulberry, and Sawyer Bearden all had two hits for Dawson County. Burt and Carter Turkett had one hit and one RBI each for Dawson County.