Hartselle baseball wins 5A state title with comeback win over Spanish Fort


    The Hartselle High School baseball team staged an exciting comeback in the final two innings to overcome Spanish Fort and win the Class 5A state baseball championship Saturday at Montgomery's Riverwalk Stadium.

    Pelham and Hewitt-Trussville square off at 4 p.m. to decide the Class 6A champion. Pelham holds a 1-0 series lead.

    Class 5A Championship Series

    Game 2 Recap

    Hartselle 3, Spanish Fort 2

    Hartselle rallied for three runs in the last two innings to beat three-time defending champion Spanish Fort.

    The championship was the eighth baseball title in Hartselle school history and marked the 907th win in veteran Coach William Booth's career at Hartselle.

    Spanish Fort pitcher Jesse McCord (9-2) held the Tigers (44-15) at bay for five innings as the Toros (38-9) built a 2-0 lead. Coach Brent Boyd's team got both runs in the bottom of the second off{}Tigers starter Tillman Landers (9-1). Will Luft singled, Reagan Eubanks walked and both came around to score. Matt Hall's sacrifice fly plated Luft and McCord's single drove in Eubanks.

    Left-hander Brady Wallace relieved Landers to start the third and pitched four shutout innings through the sixth, yielding two hits and striking out three.

    Hartselle tied the game in the top of the sixth when shortstop Brett Blackwood drew a walk to start the rally and advanced to third on catcher Chris Brown's single. Blackwood, the series MVP, then scored on a wild pitch and pinch runner Tanner Oakes scored on Blake Slayton's single.

    Blackwood delivered again in the seventh. Deacon Aldridge reached first on an error, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt and scored on Blackwood's single, his 103rd of the season which set a new AHSAA state record.

    Colton Ord then pitched the bottom of the seventh to notch his first save of the season.

    Brown had three of Hartselle's six hits. Easton Chenault, Blackwood and Slayton had the other three.

    Rob Perteet had two hits and McCord a single and an RBI for Spanish Fort.

    The 44 wins marked the fifth time Hartselle has eclipsed the 40-win mark in a season. Booth, now 907-345, is the winningest coach in AHSAA state history and the eight baseball championships also rank first among Class 5A schools.

    Game 1 Recap

    Hartselle 8, Spanish Fort 2

    Shortstop Brett Blackwood slammed a two-run homer in the first inning and third baseman Tyler Phillips added a solo blast in the fifth as Hartselle beat Spanish Fort 8-2 to take game one.

    In between the homers, the Tigers (43-15) posted five runs in the third inning and the defending state champion Toros (38-8) never recovered.

    Coach William Booth's Tigers managed just six hits but took advantage of five walks and three Spanish Fort errors to give their coach his 906th career win. Winning pitcher Jackson Smith (9-1) hurled a complete game, allowing just six hits and striking out two. Starter Ethan Walker (6-3) got the loss for Spanish Fort.

    Phillips, batting ninth in the order, had two hits and three RBIs for Hartselle.{}Catcher Chris Brown also had an RBI double to highlight the third-inning rally.

    Tyler Trammell had two hits and{}Will Luft an RBI to pace Coach Brett Boyd's Toros.

    Game two of the 5A Series is set for 10 a.m. Saturday at Riverwalk Stadium. Game three, if needed, will follow at approximately 1 p.m.

    The games are being streamed live via the AHSAA TV Network by digital partner PlayOn! Sports.

    Source:{} AHSAA

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