BUFORD — Class 6A No. 1-ranked Buford clinched the Region 8-6A title on Wednesday with a 10-0 win in five innings over No. 3 Winder-Barrow at Gerald McQuaig Field.
Jackson Gaspard had one of his most dominant performances of the season tossing a one-hitter and struck out eight in a complete-game shutout.
Gaspard was backed by an offense that pounded out 10 hits, led by Riley Stanford, Gaspard, and Stan Zagrodnik, who each had two hits and combined for seven RBI for Buford. Brant Baughcum, Nathan Smith, Ayden Digiacomo, and Brett Rogers each had one hit for the Wolves.
The game was a scoreless tie until Buford exploded for seven runs in the second, highlighted by a two-run triple from Stanford. The Wolves added two runs in the third and Zagrodnik put the finishing touches on the big win with a solo home run in the fifth.
The teams will conclude their three-game series on Friday in Winder.
CEDAR SHOALS 0
Chestatee completed a sweep of the Jaguars on Wednesday in Region 8-4A action.
With the win the War Eagles (16-11, 8-7 Region 8-4A) pulled within one game of fourth place in the region standings.
Chestatee led just 3-0 after the second inning but used a 12-run third to put the game away.
In the third, Chestatee got all four of its hits to go with two walks, two Cedar errors, and six hit-by-pitches. Hunter Pozner had a RBI triple, Levi Stowers followed with a RBI double, and Hunter Bennett and Mattox Miller both had run-scoring singles, the latter which ended it.
Nolan Turner pitched all three innings allowing just one hit and striking out eight.
The War Eagles are off until opening the final series of the season on the road against Flowery Branch on Monday.
FLOWERY BRANCH 12,
MADISON COUNTY 0
Jake Beaver smacked a two-run home run to highlight a five-inning win for the Falcons, who evened the best-of-three series with the Red Raiders.
Mason Compton got the win on the mound going the distance scattering just two hits and fanning 10 in the complete-game shutout.
Nick Linkowski, JB Bell, Kaleb Freeman, and Compton all had two hits for the Falcons. Connor Larson and Austin Bourrie had one hit each for Flowery Branch.
The win moved Flowery Branch (18-8, 9-5 Region 8-4A) back into third place in the region standings. Madison County (11-16, 8-6 Region 8-4A) fell to fourth place just one-half game ahead of fifth-place Chestatee.
NORTH HALL 12,
DAWSON COUNTY 2
The Class 3A No. 2-ranked Trojans scored nine runs in the final two innings, including a seven-run fifth inning, to blow open a close game.
The middle of the North Hall order -- Jace Bowen, Jaret Bales, Bradford Puryear -- combined for six hits and seven RBI to lead a 10-hit attack. Baker Dyer also had two hits for the Trojans.
North Hall (19-4, 13-1 Region 7-3A) led 1-0 after the first and 3-0 after the second. The loss for Dawson County (10-14, 4-10 Region 7-3A) combined with Cherokee Bluff’s win over White County, eliminated the Tigers from postseason play.
Eli Reece got the win on the mound for North Hall allowing two runs on seven hits and striking out six.
The two teams will close out their three-game series on Thursday at Cottrell Field.
CHEROKEE BLUFF 15,
WHITE COUNTY 0
Dylan Kautz led the Bears to a big Region 7-3A win over the Warriors at home in just four innings that evened their best-of-three series.
Kautz tossed a two-hit shutout and struck out three on the mound. He added a grand slam home run in the fourth that invoked the Mercy Rule.
In a six-run first, Caleb Piland had a two-RBI single, Caleb Miele had a RBI single, and Brody Beal highlighted the inning with a two-run triple.
The win for Cherokee Bluff (16-9, 8-6 Region 7-3A) clinched a playoff spot. The loss for the Warriors (17-8, 12-5 Region 7-3A) dropped them into third place in the region standings behind idle West Hall (18-7, 11-4 Region 7-3A).
Bluff and White County will close out their series on Friday in Cleveland with the winner still alive for a possible second place finish.