High School Baseball
Hawks grab No. 3 seed in GISA state playoffs
LOGANVILLE-The Heritage School Hawks traveled more than an hour to finish their suspended game against Loganville Christian, but in the end, it was worth the trip, as they posted a 10-9 victory in the ninth inning and secured third place in the GISA Region 1-AAA standings.
Once they stepped on the field to continue the region contest, it took less than 20 minutes to complete the job after the Hawks pushed a run across the plate on Tuesday in their only at-bat of the day.
When the two teams started the game earlier this season, Heritage (4-4 in Region 1-AAA) built an 8-3 lead before allowing Loganville Christian to rally and tie the contest at 9-9 before bad weather forced the contest to be suspended.
Tuesday senior Brian McKinney was the catalyst retiring all three batters he faced to secure the victory in the bottom of the ninth.
McKinney also started the offense with a double. He went to third when Peyton Henson reached on a one-out single to put runners at corners. After Mack Wikens was intentionally walked to load the bases, freshman Kirby Arnall singled in McKinney with his RBI.
'We put it in the hands of a freshman,' Heritage School coach Lynn Huffstickler said. 'He doesn't strikeout much and we told him just to make contact, and that is what he did.'
McKinney then made short work of Loganville Christian in its only at bat, striking out the first two men he faced and then getting the final batter to fly out to end the game.
'I am proud of him,' Huffstickler said. 'He did a great job. He really wanted this.'
The game was needed to decide third and fourth place between Heritage and Trinity Christian.
Heritage held a half-game lead over Trinity, who beat the Hawks twice in the regular season.
With the victory, Heritage takes the third seed and goes to Stratford Academy for a doubleheader to open the best of three series, while Trinity opens with Tatnall Square.
Both games are in Macon on Friday. The third game of each series is set for Saturday, if needed.
Despite the sweep of the Hawks, Trinity went into a slump the last month of the season, posting a 1-5 record after spring break.
Tattnall Square (20-3, 10-1) won Region 2-AAA, while Stratford Academy (18-5, 9-3) earned the No. 2 seed in the region to set up the playoff matchups.