Bulldogs fall in elite eight amidst multiple delays

May 7—THOMASVILLE — The Bulldogs promising postseason run was cut short on Monday by Oconee County after multiple rain delays.

Thomasville was able to take game one, despite going down 3-0 in the first inning, thanks to their 11 runs and 12 hits. The Bulldogs rattled off five runs in the bottom of the third and, though Oconee tied it up in the fourth, Thomasville solidified their lead with another five run inning in the fifth. In total, they scored 11 runs in just three innings.

Despite giving up five runs on the day, pitcher Jay Harrison had a solid outing on the mound. He saved the Bulldogs' bullpen, going all seven innings, allowing six hits and recording six strikeouts. The Bulldogs took a confidence-boosting game one victory, 11-5.

Game two was a different story as Oconee shut down the Bulldogs and maintained a 1-0 lead for most of the game. They played through three innings before the game was postponed to Monday due to weather.

It's likely that this delay helped Oconee, allowing their pitcher, who'd had stellar day on the mound, to rest for a day after pitching three innings. He would go on to pitch a complete game, striking out four.

The Warriors' fielders were dialed in and held Thomasville to just eight hits and two RBI's and didn't allow a single run until the sixth inning.

It was that sixth inning that gave the Bulldogs some life as multiple errors and three hits sent two run in for Thomasville. But Oconee began to find the mark once again and knocked in three more runs in the bottom of the sixth to extend their lead, one they would not relinquish. The Warriors held on to win 5-3 and forced a game three.

Though it felt close at the end, Oconee was fairly dominant in the "if" game. The Warriors looked dialed in, executing multiple run-saving plays and making the Bulldogs earn everything they got. Oconee took a quick 2-0 lead and extended it in the third with a home run by the shortstop.

The Bulldogs were able to cut the lead to one before yet another rain delay pushed the game back a couple of hours.

The Warriors stormed out of the rain delay at around 8 p.m., with three hits, two hit batters and a walk driving in three runs and extending the lead to 6-3.

Thomasville looked to have some fight left in them as a double from Jad Doane drove in a run to cut the lead to two. Ultimately, the Bulldogs fell short, losing 6-4 as Oconee took the series.

The Bulldogs had a remarkable season this year. They finished 21-12 overall and went perfect in the region, securing their seventh straight region title.

They boomed into the playoffs, dispatching Cross Creek in two games with an overall score of 25-0. It took three games, but Thomasville was able to move past Pike County into the elite eight. Though they won't be playing for a title this year, these Diamond Dawgs have a lot to be proud of in their final season in 3A.