Seth Pierce is pitching like the ace of a first-place team.
Good thing, too — that’s what he is right now.
Behind the sophomore’s 13-strikeout, complete-game effort, Northwest Whitfield High School’s baseball team remained undefeated in Sub-region 7B-4A play with a 2-1 win Tuesday night at Heritage-Catoosa.
Heritage was previously unbeaten before the Bruins (9-3) ran their own sub-region record to 4-0 with the victory. They share first place with Dalton, which is 3-0 in sub-region play and did not play Tuesday night.
Pierce allowed one unearned run off a hit and a walk, and he helped the Bruins establish a two-run cushion before he ever stepped to the mound. Pierce went 2-for-3 for the game and had an RBI single in the first inn-ing, with his hit following A.J. Orozco’s RBI single.
“That definitely gives the pitcher some confidence and lets them relax a little bit,” Northwest coach Todd Middleton said. “Seth was pretty dominant.”
Brady Middleton added a 3-for-4 effort for the Bruins, who had chances to score in the second, third and fourth innings but couldn’t add insurance runs.
In last week’s 12-0 win against Ridgeland, Pierce struck out 11 in a complete-game, three-hit shutout. That included a streak where he struck out nine batters in a row.
“We can’t rely on our pitchers throwing shutouts every game,” coach Middleton said.
The Generals scored their lone run in the fourth when Pierce hit the leadoff batter, who advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt and scored on an error.
The teams play again at 5:30 p.m. Thurs-day in Tunnel Hill, the second of the three-game series format the sub-region is using, and at 5 p.m. Friday at Heritage.
• LaFayette 9, Southeast 8: The Raiders (3-9, 0-4) blew a five-run lead in the seventh and a one-run lead in the eighth as a result of four errors in the two innings as a failure to make the “routine plays” proved costly, Southeast coach Brad Lofton said.
Pedro Vargas pitched 4 2/3 innings for Southeast, allowing two earned runs on three hits and three walks while striking out one. Blake Foster pitched 2 1/3 innings, allowing four runs on four hits with two walks while striking out three. Only two of the runs were earned.
At the plate, Austin Pratt was 3-for-4 with two RBIs, Blake Foster was 2-for-5 with a double, Cody Manly was 2-for-3 with an RBI and three runs, Devin Gentry had a double and Abram Stanley added an RBI single.
• Dalton girls 7, Cedartown 1: The Lady Catamounts’ Salaises sisters combined for six goals and three assists as Dalton (4-4) romped on the road.
Ale Salaises, a senior, scored the first of her four goals in the fourth minute of the match, but Cedartown tied in the ninth minute. However, Ale sandwiched sophomore Alon-dra Salaises’ 24th-minute goal with two of her own in the 21st and 26th minutes to send Dalton into the locker room with a 4-1 halftime lead.
The sisters each added one more goal in the second half — Alondra in the 47th minute, Ale in the 62nd — before Cedartown’s own goal closed out the scoring. The ball found the net after Rocio Carriz-ales’ shot, which was set up a by a Dalton corner kick, was misplayed by the Lady Bulldogs.
Deanna Marquez and Yareli Martinez each added one assist for Dalton, which outshot Cedartown 16-5 and got a solid performance from keeper Maria Medina, who stopped four of the five shots she faced. Medina, a freshman, moved into the net after starter Alex Brumbe-low broke her collarbone on Mon-day.
• Murray County boys 4, Armuchee 2: Juanito Bautista tied the game after Armuchee had taken an early lead off of a penalty kick, and Jose Ruiz had a hat trick to push Murray County (8-2-1, 8-1 Region 7-2A) to victory.
Umberto Alvarez had three saves in goal.
• Southeast Whitfield boys 3, Heritage 1: The Raiders scored twice in the final 13 minutes to pull away on the road and lock up the No. 3 seed in Sub-region 7B-4A.
Isael Gutierrez and Jorge Hurtado scored the late goals for Southeast (5-2, 3-2 Sub-region 7B-4A), which will be one of four teams from the sub-region to make next month’s Region 7-4A tournament.
Dalton plays at Northwest on Thursday with the sub-region’s top spot on the line.
The match was scoreless at halftime, but Southeast took the initial lead when Christian Saenz set up Alex Rossillo’s goal in the 52nd minute. The Generals responded in the 66th minute, but Raiders keeper Abel Mendiola made a crucial save with the game tied before the Raiders struck again.
• Morris Innovative 4, Model 2: The Tigers (5-6, 4-6 Region 7-2A) got a pair of goals from Felipe Barrientos and shut Model out in the second half.
Barrientos scored in the second minute of the game, and Adrian Love scored in the 25th minute to put the Tigers up 2-0. Model scored a pair of quick goals in the last 15 minutes of the first half for a tie at the break. Eduardo Padilla found the net to give Morris Innovative the lead for good, and Barrientos, a freshman, scored his eighth goal of the season to seal the win.
• North Murray boys 2, Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe 1: Trailing 1-0 at halftime and for most of the second half, the Mountaineers (8-1, 8-0 Region 5-3A) scored both goals in the final 10:30 of the game.
Aaron Mendez scored off Freddy Urbina’s corner kick to tie the game and, with four minutes left, Oliver Nunez scored a rebound on a shot that hit the crossbar.
“It was a rough game,” North Murray coach Matt Chambers said. “I told the boys after the game they have to pay for my ‘Just for Men’ because of all my hair going gray due to the stress.”
Goalkeeper Manuel Gonzalez made three saves.
• Excel Christian boys 2, Christian Heritage 1: Down 2-0 at halftime after what coach John Seehorn said was a sluggish start, Hutch Crawford scored a goal 15 minutes in the second half but it wasn’t enough for the Lions (1-4, 1-3 Region 6-A).
“We shot very poorly tonight,” Seehorn said. “We had about 12 shots on goal and they just weren’t there.”
• LFO girls 4, North Murray 0: The Lady Mountaineers fell to 0-7 overall and in Region 5-3A play.
• Heritage girls 9, Southeast 0: The Lady Raiders fell to 4-5 overall and 2-3 in Sub-region 7B-4A with the road loss.
• Model girls 10, Morris Innovative 0: Goalie Itzell Moreno had a strong night despite the final score, making 34 saves for Morris Innovative (0-11, 0-10 Region 7-2A).
• Results from Murray County’s girls match at Armuchee were not reported by The Daily Citizen’s deadline.
• North Murray hosted a pair of Region 5-3A doubleheaders with visiting Adairsville, winning both of the boys matches and losing both of the girls matches.
In a 3-2 win for North Murray’s boys, the Mountaineers (9-2, 8-2) swept doubles with wins from No. 1Jacob Ledford and Alex Ellis and No. 2 Wesley Ross and Mark Lents; they also got a singles win from No. 1 Drew Mosteller. Scores from the best-of-three-sets matches were not available.
In a 4-1 North Murray boys victory, the Mountaineers got singles wins from No. 1 Mosteller, 8-6 in pro-set play, and No. 3 Dylan Davis, 8-4, plus doubles wins from No. 1 Ledford and Ellis, 8-4, No. 2 Ross and Lents, 8-4.
The Lady Mountaineers (4-7, 3-7) lost both of their matches with Adairsville 4-1. North Muray’s lone winner both times was No. 1 Alex Westmoreland, who won 6-1, 6-2 and 6-1, 6-4.
• Dalton girls 5, River Ridge 0: The Lady Cats (10-1) won at Lakeshore Park in Dalton behind singles wins from No. 1 Courtney Morton, 6-1, 6-0, No. 2 Kara Pendley, 6-0, 6-0, and No. 3 Anna Grace Wilson, 6-4, 6-1, plus doubles wins from No. 1 Sheridan Fromm and Mackenzie Cresswell, 6-4, 6-1, and No. 2 Shelby Fromm and Michelle Rogers, 6-1, 6-1.
• River Ridge boys 3, Dalton 2: The Cats lost for just the second time in 11 matches this season. In singles, No. 2 Will Alderman won after his opponent defaulted in the second set. In doubes, No. 1 B.J. Rowland and Thomas Delay won 6-1, 7-6 for Dalton’s other victory.
• Cartersville boys 3, Coahulla Creek 2: The host Colts (9-4, 9-4 Region 5-3A) got singles wins from No. 2 Jake Mathis, 1-6, 7-6 (7-5), 7-5, and No. 3 Alex Jarjoura, 6-3, 6-3.
• Cartersville girls 5, Coahulla Creek 0: The Lady Colts (6-7, 6-7 Region 5-3A) were swept at home.
• Dalton JV girls 5, River Ridge 0: The Lady Cats (9-3) got singles wins from No. 1 Chandler Renz, 8-1, No. 2 Olivia Dinges, 8-1, and No. 3 Mary Snipes, 8-1, plus doubles victories from No. 1 Rachel Bakker and Caroline Calfee, 8-0, and No. 2 Kate Adams and Bianca Salaises, 8-4.
• River Ridge JV boys 4, Dalton 1: The lone victory for the Cats (9-3) came from No. 3 Josh McCraven, 8-0.
Track and field
• Results from Northwest’s meet at Coahulla Creek were not reported by The Daily Citizen’s deadline.
• Colder temperatures led to the postponement of several area varsity competitions Tuesday.
In baseball, Murray County at Dade County was rescheduled for 5 p.m. today, Coahulla Creek at Gordon Central was rescheduled for 5:30 p.m. today and Dalton at Ridgeland was rescheduled as part of a doubleheader at 2 p.m. Friday. Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe at North Murray was also postponed, but a makeup date has not been determined.
In golf, Coahulla Creek’s boys and girls matches with Gordon Lee and Ringgold at Nob North in Cohutta have been rescheduled for 4 p.m. on April 18.
In tennis, Southeast’s boys and girls matches at Gilmer were rescheduled for 4 p.m. on April 15.
In track and field, Dalton’s home meet that included Murray County has been rescheduled for 4 p.m. today.
Heritage’s meet that included Southeast was canceled and will not be made up.
Seth Pierce is pitching like the ace of a first-place team.
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