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Baseball playoffs move to round two
by Chase Wallace
May 08, 2013 12:05 AM | 2684 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Staff / Erin Gray -- Milton second baseman Ryan Gridley.
Staff / Erin Gray -- Milton second baseman Ryan Gridley.
With first round play in the GHSA baseball state tournament kicking off last week, local teams battled some of the state’s toughest programs — and the season’s rainiest week — for the right to advance one step closer to state championship glory.

Through Monday’s action King’s Ridge and Blessed Trinity had punched their ticket to round two, dodging any inclement weather over the weekend by sweeping their first round opponents last Friday.

The Tigers, who entered as the No. 11 seed in the Class-A Private School playoffs, upended No. 6 seed Brookstone in Columbus (8-5 and 7-5). Austin Higginbotham got the win in game one, going five innings before yielding to Grayson Byrd for the save. Brandt Stallings broke open a tight contest in game two with an opposite-field three-run homer, giving King’s Ridge starter Connor Burns the breathing room he needed to cruise to victory.

“Austin and Connor gave us some great starting pitching, and we had some timely hits in both games,” said King’s Ridge coach Jason Couch, whose team will travel to Kennesaw today to play region-foe Mount Paran in the state quarterfinals.

“[Mount Paran is] as good of a team as we have seen this year, so it will be a big challenge for us.”

No. 1 ranked Blessed Trinity cruised through the first round of the state playoffs in Class AAA, sweeping Dawson County 15-0 and 4-2.

Reed Scott went the distance in game one, striking out seven and allowing just one hit in a four-inning shutout. Brian Kehner picked up a complete game of his own in the nightcap, going seven innings and allowing two runs on the mound. John Davis paced the offense with five hits and four RBI in the sweep.

BT will host Ringgold in a three-game series in round two, which is scheduled to get underway with a double header this afternoon.

In Class AAAAAA Roswell and Milton split their respective double-headers with Grayson and Brookwood last Friday, but had yet to play a decisive third game as of Monday night due to soggy field conditions. Game three for each school was scheduled for Tuesday night — results were unavailable at press time.

A win would pit Roswell against Mill Creek in round two and Milton against Lambert. Each series would begin with a double header Thursday and deciding third game played on Friday if necessary.

Alpharetta, Johns Creek and Mount Pisgah were each eliminated in round one.

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