By Kris Freeman for White House High School
WHITE HOUSE – The Blue Devils backs have been against the wall in District 9-AA since a pair of season-opening splits with Sycamore and Greenbrier.
But White House completed an eight-game district winning streak on Tuesday and scored four runs in the top of the seventh inning to defeat White House Heritage and earn the regular season District 9-AA championship. White House (17-8, 10-2) is guaranteed the number one seed for next week’s district tournament, which draws a first-game bye in a seven team league.
White House needed a sweep of the Patriots and got it Monday and Tuesday, with Zane Brown coming on in relief with three scoreless innings for his fourth win of the season. Brown struck out five and allowed one hit, after starter Dustin Palmer allowed two unearned runs on one hit in four innings of work.
Quiet for most of the game, White House brought the bats to life in the seventh against relievers Johnathan Mooney and Ty Lopez, after Cooper King threw four and a third scoreless innings from the start.
Eric Rogers singled and Sam Abshire reached on an error, then Palmer reached on a fielder’s choice and Hunter Matherly on an error. After Rogers and Abshire had already crossed the plate to tie the game, Palmer and Matherly scored the go-ahead runs for a 4-2 lead.
Caden Blackford singled, but was thrown out at the plate from left field to end the inning on a double play off the bat of Brown.
Braden McFarlin got a lead off walk to start the game for White House Heritage and came around to score on a sac fly by Caleb Guisewhite to give the Patriots an early 1-0 lead.
Blake McDonald led off the fourth with a walk, followed by another free pass issued to Zack Logsdo, then Garrett Hargrove reached on an error allowing McDonald to cross to give the hosts a 2-0 edge.
Brown came on in relief and retired the first seven batters he faced, as the change of pace from the hard-throwing Palmer locked up the Heritage bats. Brown surrendered a one out single in the seventh to Hargrove, but forced a fly out to center by McFarlin and a pop up to short by Lopez to win the game.
Brown tied Blackford for the team lead in pitching wins, but now has 21 strikeouts to just two walks for the season, and leads the team with a fantastic 0.545 WHIP. He has allowed just eight hits in 18.1 innings pitched.
District Tournament Update
In a double elimination format for the District 9-AA Tournament, White House will open with a bye and await the winner of the 4/5 matchup in the second round.
White House Heritage (7-3) still needs to complete two games with Cheatham County to finish the district standings, as both Greenbrier (9-3) and the Patriots are tied with three losses and split the season series. If the two teams finish in spots 2-3 in either order, they would be on target to play in the second round of the tournament if there are no upsets in the first round. The two seed opens against the seven seed and the three seed opens against the six.
Monday Recap: White House 2, White House Heritage 1