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HS Baseball Playoffs: Grand Oaks sweeps The Woodlands to advance to Round 4

By: JD Hurd II
| Published 05/22/2021

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HUMBLE, TX -- A night after Grand Oaks’ dramatic comeback victory in Game 1, the Grizzlies returned to Humble HS on Friday with a chance to win the series. Grand Oaks chose to complete their comeback much earlier in Game 2, as their six-run third inning erased The Woodlands’ 3-0 lead and led them to a 10-6 win over the Highlanders.

The Grizzlies’ first 6A playoff appearance will continue into the Regional Semifinals where they will meet the District 10 champion Rockwall Yellowjackets.

Heavy rain caused the game to be stopped multiple times throughout the night. When it wasn’t causing a delay, the conditions made some plays more difficult to make than usual. The Woodlands took the first lead in the bottom of the second on a throw that got away from the Grizzlies and allowed two runs to score. A Brayden Sharp sac fly added one more run to make it a 3-0 lead heading into the third.

Grand Oaks responded with the highest-scoring inning of the game to snatch the lead right back in the top of the third. Connor McBryde delivered a two-run RBI double to ignite the turnaround, then Kyle DeRusse found open space in right field with a pop fly single to tie the game at three.

Just like Grand Oaks did in the previous inning, The Woodlands gifted the Grizzlies the lead with a wild throw, then Jace Farnsworth completed the six-run rally by bringing home two more runs with a hard line driveto left field.

The weather caused another error for each team that accounted for two of the game’s next three runs. Parker McGill was the other on a line drive RBI in the bottom of the third.

The 7-5 Grand Oaks lead didn’t change until Grand Oaks’ Sloan Laird and The Woodlands’ Gray Nooe traded RBI singles to make it 8-6 going into the final inning. Grand Oaks picked up two more runs in the top of the seventh, putting the Highlanders in a four-run hole with the season on the line.

Despite loading the bases, The Woodlands couldn’t find any late game magic and Carson McElroy’s strikeout clinched the series win for Grand Oaks.

Leading Hitters:

GO - McBryde (3-4, 3 RBIs), Farnsworth (2-3, 2 RBIs)
TW - McGill (3-4, 1 RBIs), Justin Barrry-Smith (2-4, 1 RBI)

Pitching:

GO - Hudson Hamilton (5 IP, 9 Hs, 5 ERs, 6 SOs), McElroy (2 IP, 2 Hs, 2 SOs)
TW - Sharp (2.2 IP, 5 Hs, 3 ER, 1 SO), Nooe (3.1 IP, 5 Hs, 1 ER, 3 SOs), Barry-Smith (0.1 IP, 1 H, 1 ER), Ethan Coronel (0.2 IP)

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