Sunday May 16th, 2021 9:17PM

Baseball playoffs: Entire Tuesday sked moved as Commerce postpones

By Jeff Hart Sports Reporter
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

The powerhouse programs in northeast Georgia did not disappoint in the first round of the Georgia High School Association baseball playoffs.

Unfortunately, the entire second round baseball schedule for area teams on Tuesday has officially been postponed until Wednesday due to heavy rains in the area.

(Check below for the entire updated second round schedule involving northeast Georgia teams.)

No. 1-ranked teams Buford (Class 6A) and North Hall (Class 3A) swept into the second round behind dominant pitching performances. Ranked teams Flowery Branch and Jefferson (Class 4A), Cherokee Bluff (Class 3A), and Commerce (Class A Public) also got impressive sweeps in the opening round.

Region 8-4A sent three teams, including North Oconee, and Region 7-3A had two teams advance, though White County lost in a deciding Game 3 in its first round battle. The tone turns far more serious in the second round as some titanic matchups between top 10 and even top five teams materialized.

North Hall plays host to Hart County in Class 3A. The Trojans were ranked at the top of the heap in the final Georgia Dugout poll but the Bulldogs spent a considerable chunk of the season ranked No. 1 as well before a late-season slump dropped them to third in Region 8-3A..

In Class 4A, No. 5 Flowery Branch heads to No. 9 Cedartown. Jefferson, ranked sixth, travels to No. 1 Marist in one of the biggest series in any classification in the state in the second round. The Dragons (23-8) dropped a tough 2-1 decision to the War Eagles (25-8) during the regular season. Both teams come in in the top 10 in runs scored and in fewest runs allowed in Class 4A.

Jefferson's Tommy Knight said the experience his group as acrued since that early-season showdown gives them more than a puncher's chance to advance.

"We've improved just by having more experience on the field," Knight said. "If you think about it, all our guys lost almost an entire year last year so they hadn't really played a whole lot together. So the more we play together the better we've played.

"The key to this series is going to be pretty much like it always is: pitching. Both teams can swing the bat but whoever pitches better will have a chance to win the series."

In Class 3A, No. 9 Cherokee Bluff, fresh off its first-ever playoff series win over Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe, will trek just down I-85 to old region foe and No. 4 Greater Atlanta Christian. GAC leads Class 3A in runs scored (326, 10.5 rpg) while Bluff sits eighth in runs allowed, giving up just 2.9 rpg on the season. Something will have to give.

Bears coach Jeremy Kemp is no stranger to the playoffs after guiding Gainesville to several semifinals and one state championship series. But this is new ground for his fledgling program.

"I am super proud of these young men and how hard they have worked," Kemp said. "This is a huge step for us as a program. We're very thankful for everyone that has played a part in what we are building down here."

The Spartans (23-8) will offer another tough challenge. The two teams last played in 2019 as part of Region 7-3A. The Bears (22-9) took one game in that three-game series and come into this one riding a seven-game win streak. Kemp knows there will be little margin for error at this stage.

"We will have to play with very minimal mistakes against a team like GAC," he said. "But we're super excited about this opportunity. We feel good about how we are playing and just hope it continues."

(Games listed by date and classification, highest to smallest)
(Games listed by visiting team in alphabetical order)

(Area teams highlighted in bold)

Tuesday, May 4
Hart County at North Hall (R7, S1) -- (postponed to Wednesday)

Bowden (R6, S2) at Commerce (R8, S1) -- (postponed to Wednesday)

Wednesday, May 4
Pope (R6, S2) at Buford (R8, S1) -- (DH), 4 p.m.

Flowery Branch (R8, S3) at Cedartown (R7, S1) -- (DH), 4 p.m. -- (moved from Monday)
Jefferson (R8, S2) at Marist (R6, S1) -- (DH), 4:30 p.m. -- (moved from Monday)

Cherokee Bluff (R7, S2) at Greater Atlanta Christian (R5, S1) -- (DH), 4 p.m. -- (moved from Monday)
Hart County at North Hall (R7, S1) -- (DH), 5 p.m. -- (moved from Tuesday)

Bowden (R6, S2) at Commerce (R8, S1) -- (DH), 1 p.m. -- (moved from Tuesday)

Thursday, May 5
Pope (R6, S2) at Buford (R8, S1) -- Game 3, if necessary, 5:55 p.m.

Flowery Branch (R8, S3) at Cedartown (R7, S1) -- Game 3, if necessary, 6 p.m. -- (moved from Wednesday)
Jefferson (R8, S2) at Marist (R6, S1) -- Game 3, if necessary, 5:30 p.m. -- (moved from Wednesday)

Cherokee Bluff (R7, S2) at Greater Atlanta Christian (R5, S1) -- Game 3, if necessary, 5:30 p.m. -- (moved from Wednesday)
Hart County at North Hall (R7, S1) -- Game 3, if necessary, 4 p.m. -- (moved from Tuesday)

Bowden (R6, S2) at Commerce (R8, S1) -- Game 3, if necessary, 1 p.m.

© Copyright 2021
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Baseball playoffs: Area teams ready for challenging 2nd round
The powerhouse programs in northeast Georgia did not disappoint in the first round of the Georgia High School Association baseball playoffs...
8:25AM ( 1 minute ago )
Gallinari, Bogdanovic lead Hawks past Blazers
Danilo Gallinari made seven 3-pointers and finished with 28 points, leading the Atlanta Hawks to a 123-114 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers in a matchup Monday night of teams battling for playoff positioning in their respective conferences...
10:45PM ( 9 hours ago )
Davenport, Rice record Kentucky LOLMDS victories
Jonathan Davenport and Josh Rice both picked up Lucas Oil Late Model Dirt Series victories in the Bluegrass State over the weekend.
4:44PM ( 15 hours ago )
Hall County opening up stadiums to full capacity
Hall County sports teams can finally have a true home field advantage. And just in time as several Hall County teams will be playing host to some huge matchups in the state playoffs beginning on Tuesday...
1:29PM ( 3 days ago )
Golf: GHS boys, North Hall girls take Hall Co. Championship titles
The Gainesville boys and North Hall girls captured the 2021 Hall County Championships titles on Thursday at Royal Lakes Country Club...
10:13AM ( 3 days ago )
Boys soccer playoffs: Branch stuns No. 2 NW Whitfield on the road
The Flowery Branch boys soccer team continued its trek across Georgia Thursday night...
11:09PM ( 4 days ago )
High School Sports
Baseball playoffs: Rains push Branch, Jefferson series' back a day
The Georgia High School Association second round series for both the Flowery Branch and Jefferson baseball teams set to begin on Monday have been postponed...
2:30PM ( 17 hours ago )
Baseball playoffs: Buford, Bluff, Commerce advance; White, Banks split
A couple of area baseball teams advanced to the second round, while one forced Game 3 in the Georgia High School Association playoffs on Thursday night.
By AccessWDUN Staff
9:17PM ( 4 days ago )
Baseball playoffs: Trojans sweep into 2nd round
No. 1-ranked North Hall made an early statement in the Class 3A playoffs on Wednesday: offenses beware...
10:09PM ( 5 days ago )
Baseball playoffs: Three area teams advance to the second round
In a light night of Georgia High School Association playoff baseball around the area, Flowery Branch and North Hall rolled into the second round on Wednesday.
9:37PM ( 5 days ago )
Baseball playoffs: Dominant pitching propels Flowery Branch to second round
Flowery Branch is not a typical No. 3 seed, and they proved that on Wednesday in the first round of the Class 4A playoffs.
By AccessWDUN Staff
9:29PM ( 5 days ago )