HIGH SCHOOL STATE PLAYOFFS ROUNDUP: 4 area teams a win away from West baseball title series

Published Wednesday, May 15th, 2019


The Northwestern 3A-4A’s shot at producing the state baseball champion in 3A and 4A is still alive.

In third-round games on Tuesday night, South Caldwell nipped visiting Davie County 5-2 in the 4A bracket, and Alexander Central topped visiting Cox Mill 5-1 in the 3A bracket.

South Caldwell (22-5), seeded No. 4, will be at home for a fourth-round game against No. 8 Winston-Salem Reagan (20-5), which knocked off top-seeded Myers Park 6-5 on Tuesday night in Charlotte.

The game must be played by Friday and the winner reaches the West 4A best-of-3 series against No. 11 Mooresville (19-9) or No. 2 Providence.

In 3A, third-seeded Alexander Central (23-7) meets No. 10 Marvin Ridge (23-5) in Taylorsville in a fourth-round game that must be played by Friday.

Marvin Ridge advanced Tuesday with a 5-2 win at second-seeded Crest.

South Caldwell 5, Davie County 2

The Spartans are headed to the fourth round for the first time since 2016 and fifth time since 2006 after eliminating the fifth-seeded War Eagles (16-10).

South Caldwell grabbed a 2-0 lead early on via a run-scoring sacrifice fly by Austin Taylor and solo home run by Hunter Ingle.

Davie County scored twice in the fourth inning, tying it a 2.

South Caldwell got a three-run double by Owen Foxx to lead 5-2 through five innings.

Isaac Bush struck out the side in the sixth inning to protect the Spartans’ lead.

The Spartans were last this deep in the bracket in 2016, losing in the fourth round to Providence. They also reached the fourth round in 2009 (Ardrey Kell) and 2008 (Providence) before losing.

South Caldwell won a state title in 2007 with major-league star Madison Bumgarner in the lineup and fell in the state title series the year before to Scotland County.

Alexander Central 5, Cox Mill 1

The third-seeded Cougars (23-7) advanced to the fourth round for the first time since 1993 after eliminating No. 6 Cox Mill (20-7) in Taylorsville.

Alexander Central grabbed an early lead with two runs after two outs in the third inning on a double by Jacob Bebber and run-scoring hit by Bryon Younts.

Cox Mill tied it at 1 with its only run – in the fifth inning – via four walks and a wild pitch.

The Cougars went up 2-1 in their fifth at-bats when Dalton Stikleather was hit by a pitch, stole second, took third on a wild pitch and scored on a hit by Younts.

Seth Sigmon hit a two-run home run for Alexander Central to make it 4-1.

Left-hander Bryson Hammer (8-2) picked up a win after going 5 2/3 innings. He gave up one hit, walked eight and struck out 10.

Reliever Dawson Elder came on with two outs in the sixth inning and retired all four batters he faced (three by strikeout) to gain his third save of the year.

Alexander Central, making its fourth straight playoff appearance and 26th since 1985, has five previous trips to the fourth round.

The Cougars got that deep in 1986, 1992 and 1993. They fell to Greensboro Grimsley in 1986 in a semifinal, to Winston-Salem Glenn in a semifinal in 1992 and lost two games to none to Wilmington New Hanover in the 1993 state championship series.

North Lincoln 4, West Stokes 0

The second-seeded Knights (21-4) ran their win streak to seven games, eliminating 23rd-seeded West Stokes at North Lincoln.

North Lincoln has won 16 of its last 17 games, the lone loss 2-0 to Combine Academy on April 22.

The Knights need a win over No. 11 North Davidson (21-8) to reach the West 2A best-of-3 title series against No. 17 Oak Grove (17-8) or No. 13 West Lincoln (20-7).

North Davidson advanced Tuesday by beating No. 3 West Wilkes 3-0 on the road.

West Lincoln 5, Smoky Mountain 2

Chris Moxley threw a complete game, striking out seven, and Brandon Lail had three hits as the 13th-seeded Rebels won a home third-round 2A game at home.

West Lincoln (20-7) is at home in the fourth round, a game that must be played by Friday, against No. 17 Oak Grove (17-8).

Oak Grove advanced by beating No. 8 Madison on the road on Tuesday.

Lail went 3-for-4, Brett Mason had two hits Dylan Burkey hit a two-run home run to spark West Lincoln.

If the Rebels win, they reach the West 2A best-of-3 series against No. 11 North Davidson (21-8) or No. 2 North Lincoln (21-4).

West Lincoln and North Lincoln shared the South Fork 2A regular-season title.

GAME COVERAGE BY THE ASHEVILLE CITIZEN-TIMES: https://www.citizen-times.com/story/sports/high-school/hshuddle/2019/05/14/smoky-mountain-falls-third-round/3674595002/


South Caldwell 10, Winston-Salem Reagan 0, 5 inn.

The fifth-seeded Spartans (20-3) rolled to a home third-round 4A victory behind Anna King and Addison Blair.

King, a sophomore, threw a shutout. She gave up five hits and struck out six, and Blair hit a home run for South Caldwell.

The Spartans, who had 11 hits, have won 10 straight games. They meet No. 9 Providence (18-5) in the fourth round in Hudson, a game that must be completed by Friday.

Providence stunned top-seeded Richmond County on Tuesday, winning 6-5 in Rockingham, to advance.

The Spartans had a three-run first inning and Blair’s two-run homer came in the sixth inning.

Regan Wesiner went 3-for-3 for South Caldwell and Blair and Ciara Hanson each drove in three runs.

There are three other teams left with a shot at making the West 4A best-of-3 series – No. 7 Hickory Ridge (18-6), No. 6 Olympic (18-3) and No. 3 Mooresville (24-3).

North Davidson 4, Bunker Hill 0

Sophomore Maddy Brown homered in the second inning on a ball that bounced off the top of the fence for two runs, sparking the third-seeded Black Knights to a third round 2A win over the Bears.

North Davidson (27-0) scored twice in the bottom of the second inning without getting a hit.

Bunker Hill (12-9, No. 22 seed) had the bases loaded in the fourth inning but hit into a line drive double play.

Reagan Spencer struck out eight for the Black Knights, who go to No. 2 seed Franklin (22-2) for a fourth-round game that must be played by Friday.

Bunker Hill fell just shy of reaching the West 2A best-of-3 title series in back-to-back seasons.

No. 5 Madison (23-1) and No. 1 West Stanly (23-0) are in the opposite bracket for the West 2A title series.

GAME COVERAGE BY THE LEXINGTON (N.C.) DISPATCH: https://www.the-dispatch.com/sports/20190514/north-slips-past-bunker-hill-4-0-to-advance

Madison 3, Draughn 0

Bailey Cantrell had a double and drove in two runs to lead No. 5 Madison to a home third-round 2A victory over the Wildcats (17-6).

Ashley Hamlin added two doubles for Madison while pitcher Savannah Rice checked No. 13-seeded Draughn on three hits over seven innings. Rice walked one and struck out nine.

Madison faces top-seeded West Stanly (23-0) on the road in a fourth-round game that must be played by Friday.

West Stanly advanced on Tuesday with a 6-1 home win over eighth-seeded West Wilkes.

The best-of-3 West 2A title series will be against No. 3 North Davidson (27-0) or No. 2 Franklin (22-2).


Foard goes for 20th win

All three teams still alive from the Greater Hickory area leagues – Fred T. Foard and Lake Norman Charter in 2A and Watauga in 3A – have third-round matches on Wednesday night.

Fifth-seeded Foard (19-2-1) travels to Belmont to play No. 4 South Point (14-1-0) at 6 p.m., while No. 2 Lake Norman Charter (20-1) is at home at 6 p.m. against No. 7 Central Academy (18-4).

Watauga (17-4), seeded No. 13 in 3A, is on road against No. 5 Northern Guilford (18-1-1).

If Foard wins, it plays No. 8 Black Mountain Owen (17-2-1) at home or top-seeded Hendersonville (21-0-1) on the road, a fourth-round match that must be played by Saturday.

If Lake Norman wins, it’s fourth-round match would be Saturday at home against No. 3 Wilkes Central (21-0-0) or No. 4 Forbush (16-2-2).

Watauga, in the fourth round, would face No. 8 South Iredell (15-5-0) or No. 1 Marvin Ridge (20-3-0) on the road by Saturday.

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