Canes advance to PG Showdown championship bracket

Cartersville got a solid start from pitcher Logan Martin and the Canes’ bats built a 7-0 lead in the top of the sixth inning and then held on for an 8-4 win over Sumrall, Mississippi. The win clinched the Canes’ three-team pool in the 2019 Perfect Game High School Showdown. The game was played in Hoover Metropolitan Stadium, home of the Birmingham Barons. The Southern League team is the Double-A affiliate of the Chicago White Sox. Cartersville moved to the top of the Georgia Dugout Club’s Class AAAA rankings this week and Martin — a senior right-hand pitcher and Sewanee: University of the South commit (photo) — worked into the sixth inning to help the Hurricanes to their seventh straight win. Martin held the Bobcats hitless through five frames but ran into some trouble in the sixth.

After Sumrall picked up three hits and a hit batsman off Martin, Cartersville head coach Kyle Tucker turned to Ian Inaba on the mound in the sixth with one Bobcats’ run in and the bases loaded.

Inaba walked in Sumrall’s second run, but then induced back-to-back ground balls to get out of the frame. The first was a double play that scored a run to make the score 7-3 and the second ended the inning. Tucker had to call on reliever Gage Morris in the seventh to close out the game.

Inaba walked the bases loaded with no outs, but Morris got an infield pop up and a strikeout before issuing a walk for the Bobcats’ fourth run. Morris then recorded the game’s final out with a fly out to right field. Meanwhile, Cartersville’s offense produced the cushion needed. J.P. Martin and Inaba started the second inning with base hits and the Canes’ loaded the bases when Kolby Adams reached on an error by Bobcats’ third baseman. Following a force out at home, Josh Davis put Cartersville on the scoreboard with a two-run single into left field.

Cartersville tacked on a run in the third when Sumrall committed three errors. Jordan Wilkie scored on the third miscue of the inning and Inaba made the Bobcats pay again with a sacrifice fly to center field that gave the Hurricanes a 4-0 lead.

The Canes extended their lead in the sixth inning.

J.P. Martin walked, Alan Thacker doubled as a pinch hitter to drive in a run and Adams followed with an RBI single. After two outs, Wilkie reached on the Bobcats’ fifth error of the game allowing Cartersville to take a 7-0 lead. Cartersville added a run in the top of the seventh when Preston Welchel led off with a triple and later scored on an Adams RBI single to centerfield.

Adams and Davis finished with two hits and two RBIs each. Inaba also had two hits and a run batted in. Welchel (triple), Thacker (double, RBI), and J.P. Martin added the other Cartersville hits.

Cartersville (9-1) moves into the Blue Championship Bracket of the tournament Friday night at 8:30 p.m. (CT) as the No. 3-seed where they will face second-seeded Blessed Trinity in a rematch of an earlier game this season played at LakePoint.

The Hurricanes won that game 8-2 back on February 23.

Like Cartersville, Blessed Trinity (10-2) won its three-team pool with wins over Winder-Barrow (GA) 4-2 and North Broward Prep (FL) 2-1. The Titans are currently ranked No. 2 in Georgia’s Class AAAA.

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Cartersville, Georgia