High School Sports

Notebook: 4A baseball playoffs

Spring Valley, Ridge View, Lexington, Sumter, White Knoll and Blythewood are all facinging elimination in the Class 4A state baseball playoffs on Monday.

Dutch Fork and Irmo have been eliminated, going 0-2 in district competition.

Spring Valley opened with a 1-0 win over Gaffney in what has been a hotly contested series of game in District I. Three of the four games to date have been decided by one run, two runs in the other. Jake Zokan tossed six inning of two-hit shutout ball in the Vikings 1-0 upset of seventh-ranked Gaffney in the first round. Jared Keels pitched a perfect seventh inning with two strikeouts to pick up the save. Austin Hill scored the only run of the game in the top of the fifth. Spring Valley dropped a 4-3 decision on Saturday at Laurens, and has a rematch at Gaffney on Monday.

Ridge View opened District II play with a 4-2 home win vs. Nation Ford, but fell to top-ranked Dorman 4-2 on Saturday night. The Blazers host T.L. Hanna in Monday’s do-or-dir round. Scotty Baldwin pitched a one-hitter vs. Nation Ford. Tony Price had two hits, two RBIs and scored one run and Julio Iglesias had two hits, one run and one RBI to pace the attack. At Dorman, the host Cavaliers prevailed behind the pitching of Dylan Cole, who overcame early control trouble and a 60-minutee rain delay on the way to a three-hit, 14-strikeout performance.

Lexington hosts James Island in District V hoping for another shot at Harsville. The Wildcats dropped a 5-2 decision to the Red Foxes on Friday night. Chris Harper went 4-for-4 and Jack Blackwell had two safeties, one a home run, but it wasn’t good enough against Hartsville pitcher Cody Mincey. James Island advanced by eliminating Irmo, 3-1, on Saturday.

Sumter takes on West Ashley at home, still stinging from a 6-4 home loss on Saturday to North Augusta in District VI. The Gamecocks had a 2-1 lead before rain cause a brief halt to the action. When the game resumed, the Yellow Jackets scored five runs to put the Gamecocks in the hole. Sumter defeated Berkeley 7-2 in the first round, getting a big boost when starter Jeremy Buckner emerged unscathed from a bases-load, no-out jam of his own creation in the top of the first inning. Sumter responded with four runs in the bottom of the first. Buckner got the win, but needed relief help from Josh Kisamore and Tyler Smith. Stephen Curtis was 3-for-4 with three RBIs, cracking a solo homer for the final Gamecocks run in the sixth inning.

White Knoll has a rematch at Beaufort after beating the Eagles on the road 8-2 in the first round. The Timberwolves fell into the loser’s bracket by suffering a tough, 6-4 loss at Conway on Saturday. Michael Frazier smacked a two-run single in the bottom of the sixth inning off Taylor Britain to break a 4-4 tie and send the Tigers on to the District VIII finals. Robbie Streett went 2-for-3, including a solo home run for WK. The Timberwolves banged out 10 hits in the first meeting with Beaufort. Street slugged another solo shot, scored two runs and had two RBIs, and c Catcher Austin Dunn ripped a two-run blast. Chris Harrison went the distance for the mound win, striking out six while scattering five hits and issuing no walks.

Blythewood bounced back from a 9-0 loss to Northwestern in the first round of District III to stay alive with a 5-2 win at Easley. Michael Hanzlik was the winning pitcher (allowing non earned runs) and had three hits. Daniel Young, Taylor Purvis and Brandon Burris all backed Hanzlik with two hits. Young connected for his first home run of the season. The reward for the Blazers is a return trip to Rock Hill and a rematch with Region 3-4A champion Northwestern, which dropped a 4-2 decision to Spartanburg in the second round.

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