Area play is under way in the Elmore County area, with teams vying for playoff positioning.
Stanhope Elmore and Wetumpka each posted undefeated weeks last week, with the former beating Benjamin Russell in two area contests. Holtville and Elmore County split their area series with the Bulldogs taking the tiebreaker, and Edgewood Academy picked up a pair of dominant wins.
Tallassee opened its own area play schedule with two wins against Brewbaker Tech.
Stanhope Elmore (19-5)
Stanhope Elmore eased any playoff concerns it might have had by taking both games of its series against Benjamin Russell last week.
The Mustangs took game one against the Wildcats 5-1, with pitcher Colin Woodham tossing a complete game and allowing just one run. He had nine strikeouts and zero walks.
Game two between Stanhope and Benjamin Russell opened as a battle, with both teams grabbing two runs in the second inning as the contest entered the sixth inning at 5-4 Benjamin Russell.
An errant throw on a Woodham stolen base and a sacrifice RBI from Caleb Rohrbach — who hit his fourth home run of the season in the second inning Thursday — gave Stanhope a 6-5 lead.
Then Chase Williams stepped to the plate three batters later and delivered a grand slam. The Mustangs won 10-5.
Stanhope defeated Chilton County 15-2 in six innings Saturday to close its week.
Wetumpka is possibly the hottest team in the Elmore County area right now, as the Indians are now on a seven-game winning streak. That includes four wins last week entering its first area play series against Benjamin Russell this week.
The Indians came back from a 3-0 deficit against Beauregard Monday to grab a 4-3 win on a three-run sixth inning. Dawson Fuller, last week’s Herald Fan’s Choice Player of the Week, knocked in two runs on a game-tying double.
Starting pitcher Douglas Johnson held the Hornets scoreless in innings three through six after the three-run second.
Wetumpka’s other three victories each came by at least eight runs against Buckhorn, Albertville and Hazel Green, respectively. The Indians scored at least 14 runs in each of the three contests.
Holtville fell in a tight battle to St. James Monday before splitting its first area series against Elmore County, and closed the week with a win against Dadeville. The Bulldogs won the tiebreaker game in their series against the Panthers.
Holtville rattled off four consecutive hits against St. James in the first inning to take a 3-0 lead, and extended that advantage to 4-0 in the fourth inning. The lead held at 4-1 entering the bottom of the seventh inning, but after an error, two walks and three singles, one final base knock by Tyson Eley gave the Trojans a 5-4 walk-off win.
In the team’s first game against Elmore County, Todd Wilson tossed a complete game and the Bulldogs overcame a 4-0 deficit. After chipping away with one run in the third, fourth and sixth innings, singles by Brady White and Tanner Potts set up Sam Silas to score the game’s winning run on a passed ball.
Holtville dropped game two of the series 3-2 on a walkoff by the Panthers, despite six innings of one-run pitching from Randy Davis, but came back to win the tiebreaker game 14-3 behind three RBIs each from Mikey Forney and Davis.
The Bulldogs closed their week with a dominant 11-1 win over Dadeville Saturday. Sam Silas finished 4-for-5 with three RBIs and Drey Barrett tossed all six innings of the run-rule victory.
Elmore County (12-7)
After defeating Montgomery Academy 12-7 via multi-RBI days from Sean Darnell, Brody Ward and Cole Downey, Elmore County opened area play last week by splitting two games against Holtville. The Bulldogs took the tiebreaker game, however.
Sean Darnell tossed 6.1 innings and allowed four runs, two of them earned, in a 5-4 loss to Holtville to open area play for the Panthers. Back-to-back doubles by Zach Jones and Clark Wood sparked a three-run second inning for Elmore County, but Holtville came back for a walk-off win on a passed ball in the seventh inning.
The Panthers responded with a walk-off win of their own in game two. Elmore County pitcher Payton Hall allowed just one run through five innings of work before issuing a pair of walks and a hit-by-pitch in the sixth inning as his pitch count climbed over 100. The Panthers trailed 2-1 entering the bottom of the final frame.
A Nassin Bryan double gave way to a walk-off single by Sean Darnell to even the area series. Holtville won the tiebreaker game 14-3.
Edgewood Academy (10-12)
Edgewood picked up a pair of area victories last week, winning both games by double digits.
The Wildcats beat Hooper Academy 14-0 in five innings Monday with the shutout from pitcher Conner Bailey. Bailey surrendered just one hit and one walk as he struck out six opposing hitters.
It was a 1-0 game after four innings, but Edgewood posted seven hits in the fifth inning before Hooper could post an out, including a grand slam by Alex Johnson.
Johnson added a double and a triple to his 3-for-4 day, leaving him just a single short of hitting for the cycle.
By the time the fifth frame closed, the Wildcats had posted 13 runs to make their lead 14-0, which held as the final score.
Thursday Edgewood beat Autauga Academy 15-3, in part thanks to another big day from Johnson. He went 2-for-3 with four RBIs and four runs scored.
His three-run home run in the bottom of the sixth inning, his second long ball in as many games, sealed a run-rule victory for the Wildcats.
Tallassee picked up a trio of wins last week, the final two providing a strong opening to its area play.
The Tigers opened with a 16-14 slugfest against Valley, which they won thanks in part to five RBIs from Jacob Abbott Ingram and four from Clayton Gough. Gough blasted a three-run home run in the second inning.
Tallassee used two five-run innings to pick up an 11-0 run-rule win in its first game of area play against Brewbaker Tech, then turned an 8-0 lead into a 9-5 victory against the Rams Friday. Ethan Stevenson picked up a two-run double as part of a three-RBI day.