Big inning lifts Canes past Cass; Cartersville to play for second-straight Battle for Bartow title
Cartersville baseball used a big third inning Friday night and a complete-game one-hitter by Hayden Davidson to defeat Cass 12-2 in five innings in the semifinals of the 2020 Battle for Bartow Baseball Classic at LakePoint in Emerson. Cass took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning and led 2-1 through two frames, but an eight-run third inning by the Hurricanes and three more runs across the next two innings lifted Cartersville to a second-straight championship game in the tournament. Cartersville, the defending champions, will meet Cedartown Saturday night at 6 p.m. for the 2020 title. The two Region 5-AAAA rivals also played for the tournament championship last year. Davidson (5 IP, 2R, 0ER, 1H, 1BB, 9K) earned the complete-game win on the mound for the Canes without allowing an earned run. He struck out nine.
Jayden Smith (2.2 IP, 8ER, 5H, 4BB, 1K) was tagged with the pitching loss for Cass. Trey Scott (0 IP, 1ER, 1H, 2BB) and Carson Hill (2.1 IP, 3R, 1ER, 1H, 2BB, 5K) also pitched for the Colonels.
Sam Melton had a pair of doubles and two RBI for Cartersville. Parker McPherson also had a two hit game and drove in a run. Byers Murray hit a solo home run. Chandler Tromza and Clay Ross (2 RBI) had the other Canes’ hits.
Cartersville (4-3) also took advantage of eight walks and two hit batsmen by Cass pitching.
Matt Shook had the only Cass base hit -- a first-inning triple. Blaine Ingram drove in a run for the Colonels.
Cass (4-2) will square off with Region 7-AAAAA rival Rome in the third place game Saturday at 3 p.m. The remainder of Saturday’s schedule — with all games on Field #9 at LakePoint — includes Adairsville against Pepperell at 9 a.m. for seventh place and Riverside (SC) against Woodland for fifth place at 12 noon.
CARTERSVILLE 2, RIVERSIDE (SC) 1
Cartersville advanced to the semifinal round with a 2-1 win over the Riverside Warriors of Greer, South Carolina. Canes’ pitcher Micah Earwood tossed a complete-game, three-hitter to collect the win on the mound. He walked one and struck out nine in the victory.
Riverside, who started Clemson-commit Caden Grice on the mound, took a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning by benefiting from a double and an infield miscue. Will Potter doubled in the inning with two outs. The Hurricanes answered in the bottom of the fourth with their two runs. Chandler Tromza doubled and Ben Williams singled to put runners on the corners. Jack Carter coaxed a one-out walk to load the bases and forced Riverside to make a pitching change — removing Grice for Parker Kruglewicz. Clay Ross delivered a one-out, RBI single off the reliever to tie the score 1-1 and the Canes took the lead for good when Elliott Eastin reached on a Warriors’ infield error. Cartersville then stranded the bases loaded, but held a 2-1 advantage that would prove to be enough.
Earwood retired nine of the next ten Riverside batters faced in the fifth, sixth, and seventh innings to close out the win. The only Warriors’ baserunner over the final three frames was a two-out single in the final frame off the bat of Sean Friedholm who had two of the Warriors three hits in the game.
CASS 8, PEPPERELL 3
The Cass Colonels posted seven runs in the first three innings Friday night and held on to beat Pepperell 8-3 in both teams’ opening game of the 2020 Battle for Bartow Baseball Classic at LakePoint in Emerson.
Colonels’ starting pitcher Jordan Gani (6 IP, 3ER, 5H, 3BB, 5K) went the first six innings to earn the win on the mound. Trey Scott (1 IP, 0R, 0H, 1BB, 1K) entered in the seventh to close out the game.
Cass led 6-0 through two innings before the Dragons scored a run in the top of the third. The Colonels got that run back in the bottom of the third to make the score 7-1, but Pepperell narrowed the margin to 7-3 in the sixth. The Colonels picked up an insurance run in the bottom of the sixth for the 8-3 final score.
Logan Nelson (double, RBI), Blaine Ingram (double, triple), and Thomas Botts (2 RBI) each had two hits for Cass. Matt Shook tripled and drove in a run. Gani contributed a hit, a sac fly, and two RBI while Mark Perdue added an additional Colonels’ base hit.