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Bartow County Little League 12U outlasts Warner Robins to take state tourney opener with walk-off

Bartow County Little League 12U won its opening game as host of the 2021 Georgia Little League State Tournament in dramatic fashion over Warner Robins, 3-2, with a walk-off.

Bartow County Little League 12U players and coaches celebrate their 3-2 walk-off win over Warner Robins Saturday afternoon.

With the score tied 2-2 heading to the bottom half of the sixth inning, Wyatt Garlin reached with a leadoff single into right field and advanced into scoring position on a sacrifice bunt by Noah Janssen. Drew Nida was hit by a pitch with two outs before Rush Faulk delivered the game-winning, walk-off hit to drive home Garlin. Bartow out hit Warner Robins in the contest seven to two, but single runs in the third and fourth innings by the middle Georgia visitors knotted the score after the locals had taken an early 2-0 lead in the first two frames.

The pitching was strong on both sides. Bartow County pitchers — Raiden Sexton and McCayden Hufstetler — struck out 13, while Warner Robins pitchers sat down seven. Hufstetler collected the pitching victory in relief. He walked two but did not allow a hit over the final two and two-thirds innings. Sexton was the Bartow starter and fanned eight over the first three and one-third innings. Bartow County grabbed a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Nida walked, advanced to third on a wild pitch and a groundout, and later scored when Sexton reached on third strike passed ball. Three walks followed by a Nida, one-out RBI single gave Bartow a 2-0 lead in the second inning. Hufstetler finished with two hits for the Bartow County offense. Faulk (RBI), Nida (RBI), Sexton, Garlin, and Matt Zander contributed one hit each. Warner Robins drops to the loser’s bracket and will play the Franklin County Sunday at 5 p.m. Bartow advances to play Athens Little League Sunday at 3 p.m. on Field 12 at Hamilton Crossing Park. Athens defeated Franklin County Little League Saturday night, 11-5. In earlier action Saturday, Peachtree City defeated Northern-Columbus 10-0 and Smyrna edged Elbert County, 1-0.

Sunday's schedule: 2pm - Field 11 - Peachtree City v. Smyrna 3pm - Field 12 - Bartow County v. Athens

4pm - Field 11 - Northern-Columbus v. Elbert County (elimination game) 5pm - Field 12 - Warner Robins v. Franklin County (elimination game)


Information for local Little League softball and baseball updates along with updates from Georgia Recreation and Parks Association baseball and softball tournaments are provided by the Cartersville and Bartow County Recreation Departments and the respective Little League Baseball and Softball organizations. The updates are presented by CiCi's of Cartersville located in the Cherokee Crossing shopping center.


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