Dragons’ Season Comes To An End In State Tournament

PHS Baseball, Sports

This past Friday, the PHS Dragons baseball team traveled down to Atlanta to take on the #3 seed out of region 6-AAAA, the St. Pius Golden Lions in the first round of the 4A State Tournament. This was a 3-game series meaning the team to first win two games, advanced to the next round.

 

The Dragons were the away team in game 1 and were looking to jump out early on the Golden Lions. Travis Huffman led things off with a double to left center on the first pitch he saw, firing up the Pickens dugout. Tyler Garner then cranked out a two-run bomb bringing the Dragon faithful to their feet as Pickens took a 2-0 lead. Not to be outdone, Dalton Presley found a pitch to his liking and sent it over the left center fence to make it 3-0 after one half inning. St. Pius got a run in the bottom of the frame, and after 1, the Dragons held a 3-1 lead.

 

Both pitchers were able to get out of jams and settle down for the most part to the 5th inning. The Golden Lions were able to plate 4 in the bottom of the inning to take the lead, 5-3. St. Pius then added on to that lead in the bottom of the 6th with 3 runs to stretch it out to 8-3 going to the 7th. The Dragons tried to get a rally going after a hit by pitch, a single, & an RBI single from Dylan Huffman, but it would not be enough as the Golden Lions took game 1, 8-4.

 

Travis Huffman went 6 innings giving up 6 ER, & striking out 5 on 99 pitches & went 1-3 with a double, & 1 run scored

Walker Lawrence went 1-3 with a single

Tyler Garner went 1-3 with a home run, 2 RBI, & a run scored

Dalton Presley went 1-2 with a home run, 1 RBI, & a run scored

Wyatt Gooch went 1-3 with a single

Dylan Huffman went 1-3 with a single, & 1 RBI

Caleb Brooks went 1-3 with a single

Dillon Champion scored a run

 

For game 2, the Dragons were the home team and West Ga commit Tyler Garner would be given the ball to pitch for Pickens. Garner got off to a good start, retiring the Golden Lions on 16 pitches. For St. Pius,  Ga Tech commit Garrett Gooden took to the mound and proved to be as tough as advertised. In the top of the 2nd, the Golden Lions struck first with a two-run home run to go up 2-0. St. Pius added to that lead with 3 in the 3rd, to make it 5-0.

 

The Golden Lions stretched out the lead with three in the 5th to make it 8-0. St. Pius went on to get the win 8-0, and taking the series in the process, 2-0. The Dragons just could not get anything going only drawing two walks and getting a lone hit from Garner in game 2.

 

Pickens finishes the season at 16-11, and with a 2nd straight state tournament appearance. While the Dragons are losing a handful of seniors, they will be returning a big chunk of core guys with a lot of varsity experience and adding young kids that had success during the JV season for next season.

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Dragons Celebrate Senior Night With Win

PHS Baseball, Sports

Yesterday, the PHS Dragons baseball team hosted the Raiders of Southeast Whitfield in the final regular season game of the season. Earlier in the season, the Raiders bested the Dragons in Dalton, with Pickens looking to avenge that loss. Prior to the game, the bat boy for the Dragons and the all-time home run leader for Pickens Jake King added to his record with an inside the park homer.

 

Senior Tyler Garner took to the hill for the Dragons in the final game before the state tournament. The Raiders had a mini threat brewing in the top of the 1st, but Garner and the Dragon defense were able to get out of it, sending us to the bottom of the opening frame. Travis Huffman led the inning off for Pickens with a triple to left center, and was brought in on a sac RBI by Walker Lawrence to give the Dragons a 1-0 lead going to the 2nd. Garner struck out two in the top of the 2nd, and Pickens went in order to send us to the 3rd with the Dragons still ahead, 1-0.

 

Southeast Whitfield plated a run in the top of the 3rd to tie things up at 1 a piece. The tie would not last long however as RBI hits from Joseph Gossett, Lawrence, & Garner gave the Dragons a 4-1 lead going to the 4th. The Raiders threatened in the top of the 7th with runners at 2nd and 3rd, but Dylan Huffman was able to work around it and close things out for the Dragons giving Pickens a 4-1 win on Senior Night.

 

After the ball game, seniors (as pictured above), Tyler Garner, Clayton Wilson, Walker Lawrence, Dillon Champion, & Caleb Brooks were recognized for their contributions to the program and to PHS Athletics.

 

Tyler Garner went 6 & 1/3rd innings giving up 1 run on 6 hits, walking 3, & striking out 9 on 117 pitches & had 1 RBI

Dylan Huffman went 2/3rd’s innings giving up no hits and no runs on 14 pitches

Travis Huffman went 1-2 with a triple and a run scored

Walker Lawrence went 1-2 with a single, 2 RBI, & a run scored

Caleb Brooks went 2-3 with a double, a single, and a run scored

Joseph Gossett went 2-2 with a single, a double, 1 RBI, & a run scored

 

The first round opponent for the 4A state baseball tournament has yet to be determined as of now for the Dragons. What is for sure is that it will either be against Redan or St. Pius on Friday, the 29th. Times and location will be determined later.

 

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Dragons Grab 3rd Place With Sweep Of Ridgeland

PHS Baseball, Sports

Yesterday, the PHS Dragons baseball team hosted the Ridgeland Panthers at Dragons Field in the most important game of the season to date. Both teams came in tied for third in the 7-AAAA region standings, and the winner would have the inside track to the 3 seed in the upcoming 4A state tournament.

 

Travis Huffman got the call to start for the Dragons in this crucial game. Ridgeland was able to get on the board first in the top of the 1st scoring two runs. Pickens wasted little time getting their bats going as the Dragons got a pair of 2 RBI doubles from Dalton Presley & Dylan Huffman, plus RBI hits from Wyatt Gooch & Joseph Gossett to take a 6-2 lead going to the 2nd. In the top of the 2nd, the Panthers cut the Pickens lead in half making it 6-3. The Dragons got that run back when Walker Lawrence scored after drawing a walk, stealing 2nd, then advancing home on two fielding errors to make it 7-3 going to the 3rd.

 

In the 5th, Ridgeland cut even more into the Dragons lead as they were able to plate two runs, sending us to the bottom of the frame and Pickens clinging to a 7-5 lead. A wild pitch led to a Dragons run to stretch the lead to 8-5 going to the 6th. In the 6th, Pickens got an RBI from Presley, Gooch, Dillon Champion, & D. Huffman to break the lead open to 12-5. Tyler Garner came in and closed things out in the top of the 7th to give the Dragons a 12-5 win and control of 3rd place.

 

Travis Huffman went 6 innings giving up 3 ER on 6 hits, and striking out 6 on 98 pitches & went 2-4 at the plate

Walker Lawrence drew a walk and scored two runs

Tyler Garner went 2-4 and scored two runs & went 1 inning giving up 1 hit and struck out 1 on 13 pitches

Dominic Stephens went 1-4

Dalton Presley went 2-3 with a double, a triple, a walk, & 3 RBI

Wyatt Gooch went 2-4 with a single, a double, 2 RBI, & 1 run scored

Dillon Champion went 2-3 with a double, a single, 2 RBI, & 2 runs scored

Dylan Huffman went 2-3 with a double, a single, 3 RBI, & a run scored

Joseph Gossett went 2-3 with a double, a single, & 1 RBI

Caleb Brooks scored 2 runs

With the win, Pickens is now 15-9 on the season and 8-5 in 7-AAAA play. There will be one more home game this regular season and it will take place on Friday as the Dragons welcome the Raiders of Southeast Whitfield to Dragons Field. If the game is postponed, the two teams will play on Saturday.

 

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Dragons End A Back-To-Back-To-Back In Tough Fashion

PHS Baseball, Sports

Yesterday, the PHS Varsity baseball team hosted the Generals of Heritage at Dragons Field. There were also some very special attendees at this game as 6 MLB scouts came to watch the Generals starting pitcher, Dylan Bice. This was the third game in three days for Pickens as they fell to Southeast Whitfield on Tuesday, but came back Wednesday to defeat Ridgeland 7-2. Both games on the road.

 

Junior Travis Huffman was tasked to take on the Generals in this ball game. Heritage struck first early on as they were able to get a run on two hits. The Dragons were sit down in order as we’d go to the 2nd, with the Generals up 1-0. After Heritage went quietly in the top of the 2nd, a one out walk drawn by Walker Lawrence came in to score as Wyatt Gooch hit a single to left field that got by the left fielder. As we headed to the 3rd, the game was neck and neck at 1-1.

 

The game would not be tied for long as Heritage was able to plate two runs in the top of the 3rd to retake the lead, 3-1. With the score now 4-1 in favor of the Generals in the bottom of the 6th, Lawrence drove in Dominic Stephens on a two out RBI double. Pickens then loaded the bases with two straight walks, but were unable to bring in any other runs as the Generals got out of the big time jam. Going to the 7th, Heritage led things, 4-2.

 

Bice helped himself out in the top of the 7th with a three run homer to right, making things 7-2. A one out single from T. Huffman was all the Dragons could manage in the bottom of the frame as Heritage would take this one, 7-2.

 

Travis Huffman went 6 innings, giving up 4 runs on 9 hits, & striking out 4 on 102 pitches & went 2-4 with a stolen base

Dominic Stephens drew a walk and scored a run

Walker Lawrence went 1-1 with a double, 1 RBI, 1 run scored, & drew two walks

Wyatt Gooch went 1-2 with a single, 1 RBI, & drew one walk

 

Pickens is now 12-8 overall and in 4th in 7-AAAA at 5-4. The Dragons have a tough week next week with three region games all on the road. The week starts at Cartersville on Tuesday, then at Northwest Whitfield on Thursday, then a battle with 515 rival Gilmer on Friday. All games have a first pitch time of 5:55.

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Late Inning Magic Propel Dragons Past Cartersville

PHS Baseball, Sports

Last night, the PHS Dragons varsity baseball team hosted one of the highly rated teams in the state, the Cartersville Purple Hurricanes, in a big early region match up. The Canes came into the ball game at 6-6 and 2-0 in region play, while the Dragons came in with a record of 9-5 & 2-1 in region.

 

Travis Huffman got the start for the Dragons and turned in an amazing performance. In the top of the 1st, Cartersville was able to take the lead early as three hits, and a couple passed balls led to 2 runs for the Canes. Pickens, had it’s chance in the bottom of the frame as they were able to get two runners on with two out, but Cartersville was able to get out of that jam, and send us to the 2nd, with the Canes up, 2-0. T. Huffman was able to settle down in the 2nd, and get Cartersville in order to send us to the bottom of the 2nd.

 

In what seemed to be a theme throughout the game, the Dragons had a big chance in the bottom of the 2nd with the bases loaded, but were unable to capitalize as the Canes escaped the threat. T. Huffman again showed great stuff in the 3rd, as he K’d two Canes on the way to a 9 pitch inning. In the bottom of the 3rd, Pickens had another chance to cut into the 2-0 Cartersville lead, but runners were left at 1st & 3rd, sending us to the 4th. Both teams were shut down quietly in the 4th, as both pitchers were throwing great games.

 

In the 5th, Cartersville left a runner at 2nd, as T. Huffman was able to work around it. After drawing two walks in the bottom of the inning, the Dragons left runners at 1st & 2nd, sending us to the 6th, with the Canes still leading, 2-0. Both teams were unable to get anything going in the 6th, as we’d head to the final inning, Cartersville maintaining it’s lead, 2-0. T. Huffman k’d two in the top of the 7th, sending us to the bottom of the 7th, Dragons down to their final three outs, and trailing 2-0.

 

After Tyler Garner & Dalton Presley were able to get on, they were replaced by courtesy runners, Dylan Huffman, & Caleb Brooks. Walker Lawrence then got on with a single to load the bases. Zack Moore then brought in D. Huffman with a sac fly to make it 2-1 Cartersville. As Brooks was attempting a steal to 3rd, the throw over to 3rd sailed over the 3rd baseman’s head and Brooks came home to tie things up at 2. Dillon Champion & Joseph Gossett drew walks to load the bases, still with one out. With a 1-1 count to Wyatt Gooch, a wild pitch was sent to the backstop and Lawrence came in to give the Dragons a 3-2 win.

 

Travis Huffman went the distance giving up 2 runs on just 3 hits and striking out 10 on 98 pitches

Zack Moore had 1 RBI

Dylan Huffman scored 1 run

Caleb Brooks scored 1 run

Walker Lawrence went 1-3 with a run scored

This is a big win for Pickens. After leaving a total of 11 runners on base, they found a way to score when it mattered. With the win, the Dragons are now 10-5 on the season & 3-1 in region play. Pickens will host a pair of region games next week, starting with Northwest Whitfield on Tuesday. First pitch is scheduled for 5:55.

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Dragons Improve To 6-4 With Win Over Towns Co.

PHS Baseball, Sports

Yesterday, the PHS Varsity Baseball team hosted the Towns Co. Indians in a non-region ball game at Dragons Field. Pickens came into the ball game at 5-4, and looked to keep things going with region play starting later this week.

 

Dylan Huffman got the call to start for the Dragons and looked very impressive. Towns Co. was able to get a run on two hits, but D. Huffman & the Pickens defense kept the damage to just one to send us to the bottom of the frame. The Dragons answered with 2 runs to take a 2-1 lead going to the 2nd.

 

In the 2nd, D. Huffman worked around a runners at 1st & 3rd jam to keep the Pickens lead at 2-1 going to the bottom of the 2nd. In the bottom of the 2nd, the Dragons bats came to life and Pickens would blow things open. The Dragons ended up batting around in the line up twice, scoring 15 runs, and mashing out 12 hits in the half inning to lead the Indians, 17-1 going to the 3rd. Towns Co. got a run out of the top of the 3rd, but that was it as the game was called after three innings due to the 15 run rule. Pickens got the win, 17-2.

 

Dylan Huffman went 2 innings giving up 1 run on 3 hits and striking out 4 on 45 pitches. Went 1-1 with a run scored

Travis Huffman went 1-1 with a single, 1 RBI, 3 runs scored, & 2 walks

Wyatt Gooch went 1-2 with a single, 2 runs scored, & a walk

Tyler Garner went 1-1 with a double, 4 RBI, & a run scored

Dalton Stephens went 1-1 with a single & a run scored. Gave up 1 run on 10 pitches in 1 inning

Dalton Pressley went 1-2 with a double, 3 RBI, & a run scored

Dalton Sipsy went 1-1 with a single, 1 RBI, & 1 run scored

Walker Lawrence went 2-3 with 2 singles, 1 RBI, & 1 run scored

Zack Moore went 2-2 with a triple, a single, 1 RBI, & 2 runs scored

Gabe Groover went 0-0 with a HBP & 1 RBI

Slade Hillhouse went 1-1 with a single, & 2 runs scored

Caleb Brooks went 1-1 with a single, & 1 RBI

Joseph Gossett went 1-2 with a single, 1 RBI, & 2 runs scored

 

The Dragons will be back at it on Wednesday as they travel to take on the Union Co. Panthers before hitting the road again on Friday as they open up region play with a doubleheader against LaFayette.

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Dragons Get The Week Sweep Over Murray Co.

PHS Baseball, Sports

Yesterday, the PHS Dragons varsity baseball team hosted the Indians of Murray Co. for a non-region ball game. Pickens came into the ball game having defeated the Indians over at Murray on Tuesday 13-1, and were looking to get the week sweep inside their park.

 

Dalton Sipsy started for the Dragons yesterday and got 2 K’s to begin the game, but the Indians were able to bring a run in and lead things 1-0 going to the bottom of the frame. A lead off triple by Travis Huffman sparked a four run inning for Pickens. Wyatt Gooch brought in 2 with an RBI double & Sipsy & Gooch later came in to score. Sipsy kept the Indians quiet in the 2nd as he struckout the side to send us to the bottom half of the inning.

 

In the 2nd, the Dragons as T. Huffman & Dillon Champion drove in runs to make it 6-1 going to the 3rd. After striking out the 1st batter he faced in the 3rd, Sipsy was relieved by Walker Lawrence who worked around a bloop hit to get the final two outs of the inning to bring the Dragons back up to the plate. Pickens scored 5 runs in the 3rd thanks an RBI from Slade Hillhouse, 2 RBI from Zack Moore, & an RBI from Joseph Gossett (one run was brought in on an error), to give the Dragons an 11-1 lead going to the 4th.

 

Josh Holbert relieved Lawrence in the 4th and also worked around a hit to finish off the inning to send us to the bottom of the 4th. The inning began with the 4th place hitter Dominic Stephens, and the game ended with Stephens as the Dragons again brought in 5 runs making it 16-1 after Stephens’ RBI hit and envoking the 15 run rule after 4 innings. Pickens took this one, 16-1. Pickens outscored Murray Co. during the week 26-2 in the two wins.

 

The Dragons got great pitching all game long and showed patience at the plate having only 8 hits to go along with their 16 runs.

Dalton Sipsy went 2 & 1/3rd innings giving up just 1 hit, 1 run, 1 walk, & striking out 6 on 47 pitches & drew a walk and scored a run

Walker Lawrence went 1 & 1/3rd innings giving up one hit, & striking out 1 on 13 pitches

Travis Huffman went 2-4 with a triple, a single, 2 RBI, & 2 runs scored

Dillon Champion had an RBI and a run scored while Caleb brooks drew a walk and brought in 1 run

Dominic Stephens went 2-4 with 2 singles, an RBI, & 2 runs scored

Wyatt Gooch went 1-1 with a double, 2 RBI, & a run scored & Tyler Garner went 1-1 with a double and a run scored

Dalton Presley went 1-2 with a single & a run scored

Slade Hillhouse brought in 1 run and scored 2

Zack Moore went 1-2 with a double, 2 RBI, & a run scored & Dylan Huffman went 1-1 with a single & a run scored

Joseph Gossett drew two walks, scored 2 runs, & drove in a run on a sacrifice fly

 

The Dragons are now 5-4 on the season and will look to continue their winning ways when they host Towns Co. on Monday as part of a make up game. First pitch scheduled for 4:30

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Pickens Basketball Celebrates Season At Banquet

PHS Basketball, Sports

Last night, the PHS Basketball program celebrated their seasons with their end of the year banquet. Coaches talked about the good things during the season, the growth of the players, & sang happy birthday to the birthday girl, Nettes’ varsity head coach Donna Enis.

 

The cheerleaders were up first to celebrate their season and recognize everyone that helped them throughout the year. After the cheerleaders were given their certificates, it was girls JV coach Jenna Shaw’s turn as she talked about her teams season. She had several freshman and young girls on the roster and sees great potential in the girls. Next up, was coach Beckham for the C-team (9th grade), while they did not win a game during the season, coach Beckham was very encouraged by the progress they made during the year.

 

After the C-Team, it was JV boys coach Bo Page’s turn to recognize his team and their season. He acknowledged his team for improving during the season and for helping the Varsity prepare for their games. It would be the Dragonettes turn to be recognized as coach Enis shared her thoughts on the season. She noted that while she had a young team, she was thrilled how they came together to be just one game shy of having back to back state tournament appearances.

 

Sophomore Mackenzie Hampton was recognized as an All-region player and Madison McClure, Ashley Nelson, & Autumn Young were recognized as Honorable Mentions for the All-Region team. Sophomore Shelby Cook took home the Biscuit Award given to the girl who drew the most charges. Ashley Nelson received the Academic Award for having the highest GPA on the team.

 

Kaitlin Redman then was awarded the Most Improved Award. The Offensive Player went to Mackenzie Hampton while the Defensive Player went to Madison McClure. The Coach Pruitt Award went to Taylor Wigington. Ashley Nelson was rewarded with the Sierra Stephens Heart of a Dragon Award & Madison McClure received the Sierra Stephens Memorial Scholarship. The MVP went to Autumn Young.

 

Last but not least, varsity boys coach Brad Steinhauer came up to the podium to talk about his team. He mentioned winning two games in one day to reach the state tournament and beating rival Gilmer four times in one season.

 

Holden Roop was recognized as All-Region for the Dragons & Trent Rizoti received All-Region Honorable Mention. Both players will be playing in the N. Ga All Star game on Thursday. Sam Davis was awarded the Defensive Player award while Holden Roop got the Offensive Player award.

 

Winner of the Academic Award was Avery Luke for having the team high GPA. The Best Rebounder Award went to Trent Rizoti. Tyler Garner took home the Jennings Key Memorial Award. The RJ Casey Spirit Award went to Joseph Gossett. The Heart of a Dragon Award went to Walker Lawrence. The Stephen Ledford Memorial Award went to DJ Walden. The Final award of the night was the MVP Award and was given to Holden Roop.

 

It was a great night celebrating everyone that had a part in making this season of PHS Basketball successful. Both teams have a lot of young talent and the future is bright for both the Nettes’ & Dragons.

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