AHSAA BASEBALL PLAYOFFS: Piedmont outlasts Glencoe, advances to second round

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

JACKSONVILLE – Piedmont pitcher Peyton Whitten proved to have a lot in his tank on Saturday.

The senior tossed 10 innings in the Bulldogs’ Class 3A baseball playoff opener against Glencoe at Jacksonville State University’s Rudy Abbott Field, giving up just one earned run on six hits with a walk and 19 strikeouts in leading Piedmont to a 2-1 victory.

Piedmont (19-8) went on to win the second game 8-1 to complete the sweep and head to the second round. The Bulldogs will face Westbrook Christian (14-15), which defeated Wellborn 4-3 and 16-3 in other playoff action on Saturday.

Whitten helped himself at the plate in game one against Glencoe (10-7). He went 2-for-4 with a RBI. Bayley Blanchard also had a pair of hits and a run. Easton Kirk had a hit and a RBI. Darnell Jackson delivered a hit and a run. Tyler Lusk, Taylor Hayes and Cale McCord each contributed a hit.

In the second game, the Bulldogs blew open a tight game with a six-run sixth. Kirk led the charge with a pair of hits, including a triple, a run and three RBIs. McCord also managed a pair of hits, including a double and a run. Jackson had a pair of hits, a run and a RBI.

Hayes tripled and drove in a run. Blanchard added a hit and scored two runs. Whitten had a hit, a run and a RBI. Rye Atkins finished with a hit and scored a run.

Hayes earned the win on the mound for the Bulldogs. He went the distance, giving up just one earned run on two hits with five walks and four strikeouts.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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AHSAA BASEBALL PLAYOFFS: Sand Rock's season ends at Plainview

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

RAINSVILLE – Plainview’s pitchers came ready to go on Saturday in the first round of the Class 3A state playoffs.

Cody Willingham pitched a no-hitter in game two of a best of three series with Sand Rock to lead the fourth-ranked Bears to an 8-0 win against the Wildcats.

In game one, Payne Anderson only gave up one hit in a 10-0 win in five innings.

Game two was Willingham’s first no-hitter of the season, and it was one small mistake away from being a perfect game. In the bottom of the fourth inning, he threw a passed ball on a called third strike that put Sand Rock’s first runner on base and was the only blemish of the day for Willingham. He finished the game with 11 strikeouts giving up no hits and no runs in seven innings pitched.

Plainview breezed past the Wildcats in game one. Anderson pitched all five innings giving up one hit, no runs and had five strikeouts.

At the plate, Jayse Pruitt was 2-3 with two RBIs, Colton Bevel was 3-4 with a double and two RBIs and Nathan Williams was 1-2 with an RBI.

Carson Carver had the only hit of the game for Sand Rock.

Hunter Colley started the game for Sand Rock and Will Cole came in in relief. Both pitchers combined to give up nine hits.

In game two, it started off as a pitchers battle between Willingham and Sand Rock’s Perry Stevens.

Plainview didn’t put their first run of the day on the board until the third inning when Pruitt scored off a bunt from Brice Smith. Chase Willingham then sent in Williams on an RBI single.

In the fifth inning, the Bears’ bats would come alive and score four runs to stretch out to a 6-0 lead, and then add two more in the top of the sixth to cruise to the victory.

John David Martin was 2-5 with two doubles and Bevel was 2-3 with an RBI. Brett Bobo and Nathan Williams each had a hit and an RBI.

For Sand Rock, Stevens pitched five innings with three strikeouts and gave up six runs.

Plainview advances to the second round of the playoffs and play the winner of the Pisgah-Geraldine series. Sand Rock’s season ends at 8-13.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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AHSAA BASEBALL PLAYOFFS: Cherokee County at Jacksonville series pushed to Monday

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

JACKSONVILLE – Wet field conditions have forced the Class 4A baseball playoff series between the Cherokee County Warriors (13-5) and Jacksonville Golden Eagles (20-5) to be postponed until Monday, with a doubleheader beginning at 4:30 p.m.

The series was originally scheduled for Friday, but rain pushed it to Saturday. Saturday’s games were then moved to Monday after field conditions were deemed unplayable.

The series marks the first time the Warriors have qualified for the postseason since 2008.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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AHSAA BASEBALL PLAYOFFS: Cedar Bluff breezes past Valley Head, heads to second round

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

CEDAR BLUFF – Cedar Bluff senior Devante Dixon says it’s all business now.

The regular season is over. The postseason is now underway, and the Tigers have one goal in mind.

That goal is playing for a Class 1A state championship.

On Saturday against their first-round opponent Valley Head, Dixon did his part to ensure Cedar Bluff’s postseason path got off to a good start. He held the visiting Tigers to just one hit and fanned eight in game one. Dixon also belted a double and a triple at the plate, drove in three runs and scored two more in an 11-0 victory in five innings.

Sophomore Josh Decker pitched a carbon copy performance on the mound in game two. He also tossed a one-hitter with eight strikeouts in another 11-0 victory in five innings.

The wins send the Tigers (20-9) to next weekend’s second round, where they will host longtime rival Spring Garden.

“All of our guys are relentless,” Dixon said. “They come in day in and day out and put in the work. They’re fighting for us seniors to push our careers further. We know we have to come in and handle business to get to our goal, which is the fourth round.”

Decker said Cedar Bluff had a good week of preparation despite dodging rain drops throughout this week.

“We had a couple of bullpen (sessions) at the beginning of the week and we felt pretty good about them,” Decker said. “Me and Coach Talbot talked before the (second) game. I just had to come out and fill it (strike zone) up. I felt like (catcher) Blake (Terry) called a tremendous series behind the plate, and our defense made plays behind us. It’s a lot easier when the pitcher and catcher are on the same page, and the defense is helping you out. We all had a high level of focus.”

That high level of focus was something that wasn’t lost on head coach Taylor Talbot.

“Devante and Josh both did a good job,” he said. “They were ahead of virtually every hitter, and that’s important. We want our guys to fill the zone with strikes. Outside of that, we’ve got to do a good job defensively and make plays. They were ahead all day long, and our success was created from that.”

Dixon allowed Valley Head’s only hit in game one in the top of the second inning – a single to left by pitcher Thomas Sudberry. Sudberry went 1-for-2 with a stolen base. He was also tagged with the loss after giving up eight runs in 3 1/3 innings.

Cedar Bluff took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first on a RBI-double to left field by first baseman Jansen Teague. Teague’s hit drove in Terry, who led off the inning with a bunt single.

The home team tacked on three more runs in the third to take a 4-0 lead on doubles by Dixon, Teague and right fielder Joe Bradfield. Cedar Bluff then put the game away by sending 13 batters to the plate in the bottom of the fourth, scoring seven runs. Dixon and third baseman Jake Mintz both had triples in the inning. Dixon’s triple brought in two runs. Mintz’s triple scored another run. Bradfield added a bloop single to left that scored another run.

Terry, Dixon, Teague and Bradfield all had a pair of hits to lead Cedar Bluff in game one.

Cedar Bluff carried its hitting sticks into game two. The Tigers scored three runs in the second, third and fourth innings. They added the final two runs in the fifth for the final.

Terry tallied two more hits and drove in two more runs in the second game. Keaton Kilgro contributed a pair of hits, including a double, and drove in two runs. Anthony Dingler also delivered a pair of hits, a walk, and drove in three runs. Cole Kucharski singled, walked twice and drove in a run. Teague singled, walked and was hit twice by pitches.

The visitors never retired Teague, who went a combined 3-for-3 with two doubles, two walks, two HBPs and a single.

“You’ve just got to sit back, especially on slow pitching and low velocity pitching,” Teague said. “You’ve really got to work on staying on your back foot and not staying out in front. A lot of our guys did a good job of that today. Sometimes you get impatient and things happen, but we all did a good job of driving balls to the opposite field and really making things work.”

Added Talbot: “We’ve got a lot of guys who do their part. They don’t look down on taking an HBP or a walk. They’re really unselfish, and I thought Jansen did a good job with that today. It could have been real easy to go up there and take a hack, but he was very selective and huge offensively today.”

Ethan Harrison had the lone hit for Valley Head in game two – a single to left in the fourth that broke up Decker’s no-hit bid. Anthony McKenzie suffered the loss.

With Valley Head now behind it, Cedar Bluff can focus its attention on its second-round matchup with Spring Garden.

“There’s no doubt it’s a great rivalry,” Talbot said. “They’ve got a bunch of good ball players. They’ll come in here and get after it. (Spring Garden coach) Tony (Benefield’s) teams always do a good job of competing, and that’s the thing with quality teams. The further you go, you’ve got to be able to compete every week. It’s a great thing, a huge thing for our county. It’s been a constant the last several years in this rivalry, and it’s been good for baseball.”

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Things to do in Cherokee County for the weekend of Saturday, April 18 and Sunday, April 19

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

Saturday

Centre Florist, 103 Warrior Drive in Centre, is having its 10-year anniversary celebration Saturday and Sunday, April 18-19, from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. and Sunday, from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

The Widest Yard Sale on U.S. Highway 80 is April 17-18. For more information call 334-353-5185.

In high school baseball action, the AHSAA Playoffs, First Round will be played. In Class 1A, Valley Head will play at Cedar Bluff (if necessary) and at noon, Spring Garden will play at Skyline (if necessary). At noon, Spring Garden will play at Skyline (if necessary) TBA, In Class 3A, Sand Rock will play at Plainview (if necessary), TBA and Glencoe will play at Piedmont (if necessary) TBA. In Class 4A, Cherokee County will play at Jacksonville (if necessary) TBA. In high school softball action, Piedmont will play at Cherokee County, beginning at 3:30 p.m., Spring Garden will play at Randolph County Tournament (Fort McClellan), TBA.

Visit the beautiful Rock Village, home of some of the best hiking and rock climbing throughout the world. Enjoy fresh air and beautiful scenery. Go to the intersection of U.S. Highway 411 and Highway 68 in Leesburg, turn right, turn left on Cherokee County 36, to the intersection of County Road 36 and County Road 70, turn left and follow the signs.

Visit the historical Cornwall Furnace on Cherokee County Road 92 in Cedar Bluff.

Sunday

Gravel Hill Baptist Church will host a gospel singing April 19 at 10:30 a.m. featuring Point of Honor. A covered dish lunch will be served fromnoon until 1 p.m. then the concert will resume. Everyone is invited to attend.

The Centre First Baptist Church contemporary worship service, “Impact” begins at 8:30 a.m.

Cedar Bluff First Baptist now has a new 8:30 a.m. service on Sundays.

The Edge, a contemporary worship service that welcomes each person as he or she is and challenges us all to grow together in our faith in Jesus Christ, meets at 8:45 a.m. at Centre First United Methodist Church.

St. Michael Catholic Mission has mass the first and third Sunday of each month at 5 p.m. at 600 Piedmont Highway S in Centre. For more information, call 256-927-4564.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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Cherokee County Arrest Report Saturday, April 18

The Latest Local News from the Cherokee County Herald

Local law enforcement agents have made the following arrests in recent days:

-Kristi Nichole Garrett for unlawful possession of controlled substance, unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia and unlawful possession of marijuana in the second degree.

-Chester Wayne Aycock for unlawful possession of controlled substance, unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia and unlawful possession of marijuana in the second degree.

-Eric Gregory Thompson for domestic violence in the third degree.

-Amber Nicole Tolbert on 48-hour court order.

-Eric Daniel Bone on 48-hour court order .

-Scotty Eugene Towe on revoked bond.

Source: Cherokee County Herald

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