GAINESVILLE — Region 7-3A got off to a hot start on Monday on the Opening Day of the 2022 high school baseball season.
West Hall, behind a first inning, three-run home run from Nick Sturm, beat Chestatee 7-1 at the Lynn Cottrell Complex while Cherokee Bluff, ranked fifth in Class 3A in preseason polls, rallied to knock off Class 6A Lanier 4-2 at home.
The big blast for Sturm was more than enough for the Spartans' Alex Holman, who allowed no earned runs on just three hits and no walks while striking out eight.
West Hall added single runs in the second and third and two more in the fifth. Chestatee’s (0-1) lone run came in the sixth on a RBI hit from Bryan Cantrell.
Mattox Miller and Asa Smith had two hits each for the War Eagles. Levi Stowers took the loss for Chestatee giving up four runs on five hits in two innings.
For Cherokee Bluff (1-0) Braxton Beal and Lucas Tritt combined on a three-hitter while combining for 9 strikeouts as well.
However, Lanier (0-1) took an early 2-0 lead with single runs in the first and second. But the Bears answered with four runs in the third to grab the lead for good.
Ty Corbin got things started with a RBI single to cut the lead to 2-1. Bryce England would draw a bases-loaded walk to tie the game and Corbin scored on a passed ball for a 3-2 lead. Beal drove in the final run on another bases-loaded walk.
The Bears managed just three hits -- one each from Corbin, Brett House, and Landon Kemp -- but got five walks from Lanier pitching and one big Longhorns error.