Messenger file photo by Chris McCarthy
Southside and Hokes Bluff opened the Etowah County Schools baseball tournament on Thursday, Feb. 4, with victories at West End.
The Panthers defeated Gaston, 20-1, followed by a 3-1 win over Sardis. For Southside, Drew McBurnettt had three hits and four RBI; Michael Rich, Jr., had three hits and an RBI; Hayden Fry had three hits and an RBI; Aulden Battles had two hits and an RBI; and Jacob Little (pictured above) had two hits and an RBI. Little earned the win on the mound against the Lions. In seven innings, he scattered five hits while allowing no earned runs and no walks and striking out four. Sean Wright had two hits for Sardis.
Bolstered by a four-hit, 14-strikeout effort from Payton Lemons, Hokes Bluff posted a 7-2 victory over West End. In six and two-third innings, Lemons allowed four hits and one earned run with three walks. At the plate for the Eagles, Hunter Burke had four hits; Brayson Hayes had two hits and four RBI; and Will Clemons had two hits and two RBI.