On Wednesday, the Forsyth Central Bulldogs baseball team traveled to North Forsyth for a rivalry matchup. Alex Hernandez did his thing on the mound, as he struck out seven Raiders and allowed just two hits to deliver Central a 2-0 shutout victory.
The rivalry started with a defensive battle as Hernandez and North Forsyth’s pitcher Kyle Roper were putting on a show from the mound by delivering strikeout after strikeout.
Central’s first good chance to score case when Bryson Kuhn made contact with the ball that traveled all the way into the corner for a double. Kuhn proceeded to steal third base, but Central couldn’t reel in a run and left another inning scoreless.
Meanwhile for North Forsyth, Jake Prince was the lone Raider to get a hit in the first inning. Beyond that, North struggled to get another single.
In the fourth inning, Central's Jake Walther hit a low ball and reached on an error by Raiders third baseman Mason Glennon. Daniel Smith saw an opening and accelerated to home plate. UGA commit Josh Gibbs, as well, tried to get to home plate but was caught by Raiders freshman catcher Bryson Germanenko.
In the top of the sixth inning, Smith got his second hit of the game when he swung his bat and hit the Raiders' fence for a double. Next up in the lineup was Gibbs, and he recorded a single that scored Smith for the second time, extending the lead to 2-0.
At North Forsyth’s chance at bat, Averett Thompson came out of the bullpen to throw in relief, and he struck out two Raiders to end the inning.
In the final inning, Austin McCabe got his first hit, sending the ball to a soft spot in Central’s defense for a single.
Meanwhile, Glennon accelerated to third base to put himself in a scoring position. Adding to the Raiders' momentum, Glennon stole second and Germanenko walked to load the bases.
With one out in the seventh, the Raiders knew it was their last chance to tie the game or maybe even earn the walk-off win.
Following a strikeout, a pop fly on a full count landed in Smith's glove to record the out and end the game.
Withe result, Forsyth Central (6-2) snapped its two-game losing streak and will look to avenge one of those defeats March 4 at Cherokee. The Bulldogs are also scheduled to face Woodland (Bartow) later that day in a neutral-site matchup.
North Forsyth (4-5) drops below .500 with the defeat — its second straight following three successive wins. The Raiders have a chance to redeem themselves when they begin Region 8-4A play March 3 at Lanier.