Hartselle’s Deacon Aldridge signals safe after sliding into home plate when Brett Blackwood hit an 0-2 RBI single in the seventh inning.
Hartselle’s Deacon Aldridge signals safe after sliding into home plate when Brett Blackwood hit an 0-2 RBI single in the seventh inning.

Archived Story

Tigers make most of second chance

Published 2:51pm Tuesday, May 21, 2013

MONTGOMERY – Chris Brown might want to send a “Thank You” card to the West Point baseball team this week.

The Hartselle catcher and UAHuntsville signee knows that his team wouldn’t have had the chance to make the playoffs without the Warriors defeating East Limestone 6-4 in an area game on April 9.

That forced the Indians to come to Reuben Sims Field on the last day of the regular season to play a tiebreaker game.

“Well you know, it’s not over till it’s over – that’s what they say,” said Hartselle head coach William Booth. “It wasn’t over. We just had to take what we get.”

Hartselle won that game 12-2 in five innings and ignited the Tigers’ run to the state championship. They finished with a 10-2 record in the playoffs.

The only losses came Cullman pitcher Keegan Thompson, who struck out 16, and a rain-shortened game against Homewood in the quarterfinals.

“We took advantage of our second life, Brown said. “I guess we owe them a thank you too. We were given a second life and we took advantage of it and we came up big.”

MVP shortstop Brett Blackwood echoed those sentiments.

“Like he said, you could thank West Point for beating East Limestone for winning that one game in the area,” Blackwood said. “Ever since we’d been down, everybody’s been focused. We came together as one.”

Pitcher Brady Wallace, who got the Game 2 win in the championship series, compared the team to a family.

“We might have had a few problems here and there, but we always came back together and fought. We fought hard every game,” Wallace said.

Booth said this team had that one common goal and stayed together throughout the season’s ups and downs.

“They were all on the same page,” Booth said. “Winning was very important to them. In January, our goal was Montgomery and that’s what we wanted more than anything in the world.”

Brown said it was big for the Tigers to earn the sweep.

“It couldn’t have happened to a better team,” Brown said. “It’s the best team I’ve seen as a whole. We went through ups and downs and worked through them like a true family.”

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