Generals score three in seventh to edge Canes for region title
The two region leaders in Region 7-AAAA all season long have been the Cartersville Hurricanes and the Heritage-Catoosa Generals, so their battle Tuesday night at Richard Bell Field was as tight as the season race has been in the standings.
Heritage came away with the win and the region title this time as the Generals scored three runs in the top of the seventh to escape with a 5-4 come-from-behind win.
Heritage will be the region’s top seed in the Class AAAA state playoffs that begin next week. Cartersville will finish second in the region.
The Generals got on the scoreboard first on a Noah Hill homerun in the third inning, but the Canes would match that run in their half of the frame.
Zach Yancey and Anthony Seigler both singled and Yancey eventually scored on a passed ball to even the score, 1-1.
Cartersville took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth.
Devin Warner singled to left field, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Parker Tidwell, and scored off a Spencer Dickey single.
Heritage tied the game again in the top of the fifth. The Generals used a single, a sacrifice bunt, a passed ball, and a sacrifice fly to knot the score at 2-2.
In the bottom of the fifth, the Canes loaded the bases and took a 4-2 lead when Carrington Evans reached on a two-base error by the Generals’ shortstop.
Elliott Anderson (6 IP, 2R, 1ER, 5H, 2BB, 9K) pitched the first six innings for the Canes. He gave way to Anthony Seigler (1 IP, 3ER, 3H, 1BB, 1K) for the seventh inning.
Both teams went scoreless in the sixth inning, but Heritage struck for three runs in the top of the seventh. Three straight singles started the Generals’ frame. Luke Grant and Joseph Hill reached on infield hits and Noah Hill tied the game with a 2-RBI single to right field.
Seigler struck out Cole Wilcox for the first out of the inning and walked Dylan Bice for runners at first and second.
Seigler then induced a ground ball to second base that was a potential inning-ending double play, but the throw to first got away and Hill was able to score from second base for the Generals’ go-ahead run.
Seigler doubled to open the bottom of the seventh inning for the Canes and his courtesy runner, Seth Smith, reached third with two outs before the comeback effort was thwarted with a strikeout.
Bice (2 IP, 0R, 1H, 0BB, 3K) picked up the pitching win for Heritage with a pair of shut out innings. Wilcox (5 IP, 4R, 3ER, 6H, 2BB, 1K) was the Generals’ starter.
Noah Hill homered with three hits and four RBI to lead the Heritage offense. Grant added two hits and scored twice. Joseph Hill, Wilcox, and Josh Gibson had the other Generals’ hits.
Seigler had two hits and walked twice for the Canes. Anderson (double), Dickey, Yancey, and Jacob Fowler (double) added one hit each. Evans had two RBI.
Heritage-Catoosa improved to 18-7 overall and 12-1 in Region 7-AAAA.
Cartersville (14-11, 10-3) wraps up the regular season with a home game Thursday against LaFayette.