SANDERSVILLE, Ga. - When Washington County won five games Zack Webb's freshman season, he never dreamed of playing in the postseason.
What a difference three years makes.
"As a ninth-grader, I would've never imagined getting this far," Webb said. "We've come a long, long way."
On Wednesday, the Golden Hawks ended their record-setting season with 10-4, 10-1 losses to LaGrange in the Class AAA quarterfinals. Yet, it was hard for Webb and eight fellow seniors to dwell on the defeats.
"I think we've broken about every school record in baseball," Webb said. "It's disappointing, yet it's been a success."
Washington County (24-8) set a school record for wins - breaking last year's mark of 19 victories - and captured two playoff series for the first time. The Golden Hawks couldn't extend their run, though, managing nine hits in the doubleheader. Washington County coach Dwayne Sapp said the weeklong layoff between playoff rounds might have hurt the Golden Hawks at the plate.
"Today our bats were a little cold," he said. "Being off a whole week has been real hard. You can simulate live pitching all you want in practice, but there's nothing like playing games and being in situations."
Nothing could have prepared Washington County for Game 1 starter Josh Edmondson. The junior right-hander allowed three batters to reach base the first five innings - two on errors and one on a walk. He then picked two of those runners off first base.
LaGrange (26-5) led 1-0 in the fourth inning when the Golden Hawks fell apart defensively. Washington County made four errors in the first game, not counting three misplayed balls that fell in for hits. The Grangers scored an unearned run in the fourth and tacked on two runs in the fifth and sixth innings, breaking the game open.
"Today, it seemed like every error we made came back to haunt us," Sapp said. "They did a great job of capitalizing on every mistake we made."
In Game 2, Washington County committed four more errors. The Golden Hawks fell behind 4-0 after the first two innings and never managed to put together a sustained rally.
Reach Chris Gay at (706) 868-1222, ext. 114.
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