CENTRE – Spring Garden junior pitcher Landon Gowens was zeroed in against Cedar Bluff’s hitters on Friday night in the Cherokee County Baseball Tournament.
Gowens no-hit the Tigers and struck out 10 in five innings. He also had plenty of offense in the Panthers’ 17-0 win.
“I fill the holes and let them try to put it in play. I just did what I was supposed to,” Gowens said. “I appreciate (the run support). That takes a lot of pressure off me when we’re ahead. It just makes me a little bit more relaxed. I like the way we come out and handled business.”
Spring Garden coach Tony Benefield did also.
“That was a big start (to the county tournament),” Benefield said. “We knew we had to come out and take care of business in this game to get into the championship. Our seniors are starting to step it up. I let Luke (Welsh) call the pitches at catcher tonight. He did an outstanding job. It allowed Landon to keep his pace up.
“Landon pitched at Weaver a couple of weeks ago and he was throwing it really hard. He got my attention as far as his velocity, and tonight I think he upped it more. I’m saying he was mid-to-high 80s tonight. He was pretty dang unhittable. It was a good outing for him, and it was a good outing for everybody really. We hit the ball well. We got our bunts down for the most part. We played good defense on the balls that were put in play. I’m pleased with them all the way around.”
Spring Garden got its offense rolling in the bottom of the second inning. The Panthers pounced for 12 runs, with the big blows of the inning off the bats of Kenneth Petty and Chapel Pope. Petty posted a three-run double to left. Pope later added a two-run double to right.
Petty went 2-for-2 with a pair of doubles. Pope was 2-for-3.
The Panthers tacked on three more runs in the third and two more in the fourth for the final.
Ryley Kirk and Jackson Maddox both collected a pair of hits, including a double apiece. Luke Welsh, Cam Welsh, Weston Kirk and Reece Winstead all had a double apiece. Grayden Guthrie also had a hit for the Panthers, who didn’t strike out the entire game.
Corey Teague suffered the loss for the Tigers. He worked 2 1/3 innings before giving way to Jacob Burleson.
Spring Garden will play the winner of Saturday’s Sand Rock and Cherokee County noon semifinal game. The county championship game is scheduled for 2 p.m. at Cherokee County High School.
Cedar Bluff 7, Gaylesville 5
CENTRE – Corey Teague went 3-for-3 with two doubles, a run and four RBIs to lead Cedar Bluff to a 7-5 win over Gaylesville in the opening game of the Cherokee County Baseball Tournament on Friday in Centre.
The Tigers took an early 6-0 advantage and led 7-1 after four innings before the Trojans attempted a comeback.
Gaylesville scored a pair of runs in top of the fifth and two more in the top of the sixth to make it a 7-5 game. They had runners on in the seventh before Jacob Burleson slammed the door.
Kaden Pack earned the win for the Tigers after working 2 1/3 innings with a walk and three strikeouts. He also had a hit and a RBI at the plate.
Hagen Stallings went 2-for-4 and scored three runs. Preston Burt doubled, scored and drove in a run. Jacob Burleson walked twice and scored two runs.
Tyler Bentheimer suffered the loss for the Trojans. He walked four and struck out six batters in six innings. Bentheimer also led Gaylesville at the plate by going 3-for-4 with two RBIs.
Keylon Higgins had a pair of hits, including a double. He also walked and scored a run. Tanner Eads doubled, walked and drove in two runs. DJ Lee had a hit, a walk and a run. Michael Reynolds finished with a hit and scored a run.
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