Nathan Hooks

Nathan Hooks, right, celebrates after a solo home run in Game 1 against Decatur on Wednesday.

Some late inning heroics ended up not being able to help Walnut Grove force a decisive Game 3 against Decatur and ended the Warriors’ 2021 season.

Walnut Grove fell in the first round of the Class AAAAA state playoffs to the Region 5-AAAAA champions 11-1 in Game 1 and 10-5 Game 2.

Down 5-3 most of Game 2, Walnut Grove was able to tie the contest at 5-5 and force an extra inning. Coby Wilkerson singled to drive in Kolton Goodbar followed by a Josh Johnson single that pushed across Braxton Brooks.

However, Decatur capitalized on the extra frame and blasted two home runs to take a 10-5 lead heading into the bottom half of the inning.

Johnson and Darrin Parker each finished with two hits in Game 2. 

Tyler James and Brooks both saw time on the mound in Game 2. James went five innings, giving up five hits and five runs while striking out three batters. Brooks tossed three innings with four strikeouts while giving up five hits and five runs.

The extra-inning loss came after a five-inning 11-1 loss in Game 1. The Warriors’ only run in the contest came off a Nathan Hooks home run in the top of the fifth.

Noah Brown had the most successful stint on the mound for the Warriors in Game 1. He tossed 2 1/3 innings, giving up three hits and two earned runs while striking out three batters.

Walnut Grove finishes the season with an 18-13 record and trip to the state playoffs after finishing as the No. 4 team in Region 8-AAAAA.

Brett Fowler is the sports editor of The Walton Tribune. He is a 2016 graduate of the University of North Georgia and a 2010 graduate of Monroe Area High School. Brett has been covering Walton County sports since 2011.

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