This No. 4 seed hasn’t been a welcome sight in the bracket. But most No. 4 seeds aren’t like Greenbrier.
The Wolfpack baseball team has picked up two series wins on the road against higher seeds as it regrouped after a region tournament slump. Now Greenbrier is one of the three area teams still in the hunt for a Georgia High School Association state championship.
As the quarterfinals start today, Westside is home against Lovett in Class AA. In Class AAAAA, Greenbrier visits East Paulding and Evans travels to Pope.
Greenbrier is one of three No. 4 seeds still alive, along with Tift County in Class AAAAAA and Troup County of Class AAAA.
The Wolfpack got the fourth seed after losing just four times going into the region tournament, compiling an 8-1 subregion mark. Greenbrier lost in the region semifinals and in the third-place game; however, in the state tournament, its run has included two wins by at least nine runs.
Fellow Region 2-AAAAA team Evans won in the first round at home, then on the road in the second. Evans scored 17 combined runs in the last two games to take the series and advance to the quarterfinals.
“It’s a big plus,” Knights coach Ricky Beale said of the hitting. “Our pitchers have done a good job keeping us in ball games, so hopefully the bats will keep going and give our pitchers some extra leeway.”
While Evans and Greenbrier have won at least one road series, Westside has swept two home series. Patriots ace David Hagelston has been stingy, as teams have scored just two runs over his two state playoff starts.
Westside, the Region 3-AA champion, now plays Lovett, which won its most recent state title in 2009.
The Patriots haven’t won it all since going back-to-back in 1987 and 1988, but this team is getting close, with Hagelston and No. 2 pitcher Austin Childers getting wins in the playoffs.
“David’s been that guy, even last year. He’s just done a good job.” Westside coach Gerald Barnes said. “Austin has also done a good job. They’ve been consistent. They haven’t been overpowering, but they’ve been consistent.”