Written by Corbett Smith
Baseball playoff roundup: Rowlett, Highland Park elude 1st-round disaster in one-and-done matchups
After losing the deciding coin toss, Rowlett coach Paul Carmon was pragmatic about his team — No. 5 in the area’s Class 5A rankings — being forced to play a one-game series against Richardson in the bi-district round of the 5A playoffs.
“If you survive it, it’s a good thing,” Carmon said.
Rowlett did just that, as starter Justin Garcia allowed one hit in six innings, striking out six in a 6-0 shutout win. Jerad Wilson hit a solo home run in the second inning, finishing 1-for-2 with two walks. Rowlett (26-6) stretched its lead with four runs in the fourth.
“If you win, it’s good to face that elimination pressure that you’d face in a Game 3 down the road,” Carmon said. “It’s a wake-up call that tomorrow your season could be over.”
Rowlett will face the winner of the Mesquite-Bryan series in the area round.
Highland Park 3, Frisco Centennial 1: In another one-game series, Highland Park’s Chris McDade hit a walk-off home run in the bottom of the seventh to advance.
McDade drove in Mark Gottsacker with a grounder in the first, but Frisco Centennial answered in the following inning. With two outs in the seventh, McDade knocked a 1-0 pitch over the wall for the win for Highland Park (29-4), No. 3 in the 4A area rankings.
“We didn’t want [a one-game series],” Highland Park coach Fred Oliver said. “I’ve been around long enough to know what might happen.”
Coppell 9, Flower Mound 2: Coppell’s first four hitters in its lineup — Matt Kaskow, Tyler Zabojnik, Adam Toth and Tyler Hernandez — scored all nine runs in Game 1 of a three-game 5A Region I bi-district series.
Toth, a Baylor signee, hit a three-run home run in the first inning, going 3-for-4 with a double and five RBIs. Sophomore Jake Elliott pitched a complete game for Coppell, allowing five hits and two runs — and retiring the final eight Flower Mound batters in order.
Mansfield Legacy 4, Irving 2: Garrett Scott hit a go-ahead, two-run single in the fifth, as Mansfield Legacy won the opener of a three-game 5A Region I bi-district series.
Legacy starter TeJay Antone survived a two-run home run by Trevor Story in the first. He then got out of a jam in the sixth, getting a double play with runners at second and third and one out, snagging a hard line drive at his head by Irving’s Jeff Stovall, and doubling the runner off second.
Southlake Carroll 5, Plano East 1: John Curtiss pitched six innings, allowing one run, as Southlake Carroll (26-6), No. 1 in the 5A area rankings, got a Game 1 win in the three-game bi-district series.
After Ty Washington hit an RBI double to close Plano East’s deficit to 2-1 in the bottom of the fifth, Southlake Carroll pinch hitter Darien McLemore — son of former Rangers second baseman Mark McLemore — hit a three-run double in the top of the six.
Hurst L.D. Bell 10, Grand Prairie 0: Brad Adams pitched a perfect game over five innings, and also went 3-for-3 with a double, as No. 6 L.D. Bell (25-8) run-ruled Grand Prairie in Game 1 of a three-game 5A Region I bi-district series.