The Rockmart Yellow Jackets had a good week of region play in and out of Polk County, with the exception to the end. Despite picking up early week wins, the Jackets took a loss to the Dade County Wolverines, who upset the apple cart for Rockmart and took away their chance of going undefeated through the region in 2018.
It doesn’t change the facts on the ground: Rockmart (14-6 overall) is the best team in 7-AA. Even with the loss, the Jackets remain in the lead ahead of Dade County, who stood at 8-2 compared to Rockmart’s 8-1. The Jackets defeated the Wolverines earlier in region play on a trip to Trenton 8-4 on March 13. Dade also has a loss to Pepperell on the record.
Rockmart’s only bump in the road so far in the region has been against the Wolverines, and otherwise they are excelling above and beyond expectations for the year. In early week play before Spring Break, Rockmart continued a winning streak to 11 games, with a 17-4 win over Gordon Central on the road on April 3, then turned around the next day and beat Gordon Central at home 4-3.
The Jackets put up some dramatics over Gordon Central at the start of the week, busting up a 4-all tie with the Warriors on a run scored on stolen bases.
Cody Parramore drove in four runs in the game and went 3-for-4 at the plate, putting up a single in the second, two in the fifth when he came to bat twice against the Warriors. Brayden Cole also had a big day after he hit a first pitch homer during a third inning at bat and scored two runs.
The Jackets ended up pulling in 12 runs in the fifth, with Parramore, Ty Floyd, Johnathan Suppes and walks by Cole and Sam Sanders.
Floyd didn’t get the win on the mound during the April 3 road game against the Warriors. That was earned by Luke Queen, who lasted for three innings, allowing a hit and no runs while picking up six strikeouts. That was after Griffin Pace started the game, but only after he gave up four runs on four hits over two innings, with five strikeouts.
The Jackets totaled 11 hits over the Warriors.
The next day in a home game against a perennial quality team in Northwest Georgia, the Jackets picked up a 4-3 win over the Trojans.
Rockmart and Gordon Lee tied the game up in the second inning, and then the Trojans took the lead by a run in the top of the fourth and added one more in the top of the sixth and looked to close out the Jackets for the afternoon.
Instead, the home team stormed back with a strong sixth inning three-run push for the comeback.
Watching the big game at home over Gordon Lee were several Division I scouts coming to check out the game of Floyd, the sophomore pitcher and infield utility man who is expected to be a big factor for the Jackets in the years to come. He’s already drawn the attention of a number of colleges across the country for his skill on the diamond, and at the plate. Scouts from schools — especially those in the Southeastern Conference — included Vanderbilt, Tennessee, Florida, North Carolina, Georgia and Clemson.
Floyd earned the win over the Trojans after two innings of work, allowing no hits and only a single run, and striking out five. He got help from the bullpen from Cole and Suppes as relievers to close out the game.
On Friday, Rockmart gave up two runs in the top of the first and four more in the top of the second during the loss to Dade County.
The Wolverines added two more in the fourth on 10 hits overall in the game for the win.
Rockmart had only the weekend to recover. By Monday after press time, they were back to work with a non-conference game against Paulding County, followed by a road trip to Chattooga.
They round out the week after a break today on the road Thursday in a rematch against Gordon Lee, then a Friday road trip to Pepperell.
Next week finishes out the regular season, spring weather permitting. They’ve got a road trip on April 16 ahead, followed by a home game and senior night hosting Coosa on April 17, then one more region game and trip to Floyd County to face Armuchee on April 19.
Rockmart rounds out the season at Cedartown to end the season on April 20.
Update: On Monday, Rockmart defeated Paulding County as Parramore put up four RBI's in a 10-5 win for the Jackets.