Several teams still standing in baseball playoffs

Redan and Decatur high schools are the only DeKalb high school baseball teams left standing in the Georgia High School Association’s 2023 baseball playoffs.

Decatur High School advanced with a 20-10, 13-7 sweep over Union Grove.

The Redan Raiders swept their second consecutive playoff series 2-0, 6-5 to defeat Rockmart on April 29 at Redan.

Redan returns as the home team at Gresham Park on May 6 to take on Region 3 champion Appling County (22-9) in a double-header beginning at 11 a.m. If necessary, a game three will be played May 8 at 4 p.m.

The Decatur Bulldogs will play at Centennial beginning with a double header on May 6. Times for Decatur’s Elite Eight games were unknown at press time.

In the Raiders Sweet 16 win, Redan third baseman Tyrell Wyatt made a big defensive play in the bottom of the seventh inning to seal the Raiders 6-5 come-from-behind victory.

The Raiders (20-10) had just scored two runs in the top of the seventh inning to take the lead for the first time since the first inning and were looking to close out the series.

The Rockmart Yellow Jackets (19-12), who had led since the bottom of the first inning in game two, trailed by one in the bottom of the seventh inning and needed a walk-off run to win.

Jake Bailey started the inning for Rockmart with a single off Derek Peoples Jr., who had relieved Redan starter Daelyn House to keep the Raiders within one.

Bernard Moon entered the game in relief of Peoples and walked the first batter he faced to put runners on first and second with no outs in the inning. Moon then struck out Nolan Clemons—who was 5-7 on the day—to get the first out. Calliyon Thompson grounded back to Moon for the second and Rockmart had runners on second and third with just one out remaining.

Rockmart’s Kason Zuker then hit a slow hopper down the third base line where Wyatt charged the ball and threw to first in time to get Zuker for the final out of the game.

The Raiders won the first game of the series 10-0 and got off to a quick 1-0 start in the top of the first inning of the second game on a solo shot to right by Moon.

Rockmart answered with three runs in the bottom of the first to take its first lead of the day.

Redan rallied to tie the game at 3-3 on an RBI double by Luis De La Cruz in the second and a sacrifice fly by Wyatt in the third.

House pitched three scoreless innings before errors got him in trouble in the bottom of the fifth, which scored two runs for a 5-3 Rockmart lead.

Jamie Howze hit an RBI groundout to score Moon which pulled the Raider within 5-4 going into the bottom of the sixth. Peoples set down the next three Yellow Jackets in the sixth to keep the Raiders within one.

De La Cruz reached on an error to start the seventh and then stole second to put the tying run in scoring position for Redan. Rockmart starter Hunter Atkins, who would go the distance in the loss, then set down the next two batters to bring Josh Westbrook to the plate as Redan’s last chance.

Westbrook skied a pop fly into shallow center that fell between three Jackets and De La Cruz went home to tie the game at 5-5. Brightwell followed with a single deep in the hole between second and third base to bring Westbrook home with the go-ahead run.

De La Cruz led the Raiders at the plate going 2-3 with a double, an RBI, and one run scored. Peoples picked up the pitching win.

The Champion editor Jay Phillips contributed to this article. 

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