Devine practically perfect as Warriors sweep into next round
by Carlton D. White
cwhite@mdjonline.com
May 03, 2014 04:00 AM | 1690 views | 0 0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend | print
North Cobb’s Eli Sepnieski crosses the plate as Rockdale County catcher Davis Foster waits for the throw in Friday’s opening game. The Warriors won the game, then went on to complete the first-round Class AAAAAA sweep.
<BR>Staff photo by Jeff Stanton
North Cobb’s Eli Sepnieski crosses the plate as Rockdale County catcher Davis Foster waits for the throw in Friday’s opening game. The Warriors won the game, then went on to complete the first-round Class AAAAAA sweep.
Staff photo by Jeff Stanton
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KENNESAW — Trevor Devine hit every pitch he liked, and he laid off all the ones he didn’t.

The result was a perfect 7-for-7 effort with two walks and eight RBIs, as the senior led North Cobb to a doubleheader sweep of Rockdale County in the first round of the Class AAAAAA state playoffs Friday at Harvey Cochran Field.

The Warriors won the first game 12-2, then continued the offensive intensity with an 11-4 win in the clincher.

Devine batted 4-for-4 with a double, home run, four RBIs and two runs scored in Game 1, then returned in the nightcap to post a 3-for-3 effort with a double, four RBIs, three runs scored and two walks.

Also a reliable pitcher, he gave up two earned runs on eight hits, struck out three and walked two in a complete-game victory in Game 1.

“It’s always a team performance,” Devine said. “You can’t win with just one player. I saw the ball well (Friday) and just did what the coaches tell us to do. The two school lunches and pregame and midgame meals didn’t hurt either. They always help.”

North Cobb had its way with Rockdale’s pitching, totaling seven hits and five walks in the first game, which ended in five innings. The Warriors came back to log 11 hits and collect seven walks in Game 2.

Elijah Sepnieski batted 5-for-9 with two doubles, two runs scored and five RBIs in the series, while Dustin Morrow hit 2-for-6, stole two bases and scored four times. Chandler Seivers had a triple, scored twice and collected three RBIs.

Region 4AAAAAA runner-up North Cobb (19-9) moved on to a second-round series at Region 1AAAAAA champion Coffee beginning Wednesday.

“I thought we threw the ball well and played solid defensively,” North Cobb coach Tom Callahan said. “Trevor had been our engine all year on the mound and at the plate, and as he goes, we go. Our other guys had some great performances, too.

“They made sure they were tough outs. The middle and the bottom of the lineup gave us some help. Seivers had a good night and Sepnieski keeps doing what he’s been doing. The contributions were there from top to bottom.”

Rockdale took a 1-0 lead in the first inning of Game 1, but it was short-lived as North Cobb tied the contest in the bottom half and got help from a three-run home run from Devine in the second to go ahead 4-1.

Austin Starling’s sacrifice fly contributed to one of two runs in the third and the Warriors sent 10 batters to the plate in a six-run fourth inning that included three hits and two Rockdale errors to put the game out of reach.

Tre Kirklin batted 1-for-3 with two RBIs, two stolen bases and scored twice for the Warriors. Andrew Eiswerth also scored a run.

North Cobb jumped on the Bulldogs early in the nightcap, scoring three runs in the first, three more in the second and two in the third to stake an 8-0 lead.

Rockdale’s Jelani Clarington blasted a two-run home run in the fourth, but RBI singles from Sepnieski and Tyler Martin scored Devine and Ryan Schmitz in the fifth to put the Warriors back in front by eight.

Terrell McLaughlin, who batted 2-for-4 and scored twice, came home for one of the Bulldogs’ two fifth-inning runs as Rockdale trailed 10-4.

Seivers’ RBI groundout in the sixth was the final scored in the contest as North Cobb’s Chad McClanahan allowed one hit over 2 2/3 innings of relief. Starter Nolan Hahlbohn picked up the victory after giving up four runs — three earned — on six hits while striking out four and walking four over 4 1/3 innings. He also batted 2-for-5 with two RBI in the nightcap.

“It was such a long day,” Callahan said. “If you split, you don’t know what to expect the next day, so it’s good to get this series out of the way. I know I can sleep (Friday).”
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