It wouldn’t be a Cedartown at Rockmart game without some high drama before the close of the contest.
This past week’s first of two baseball games between the Bulldogs and Jackets provided a wild finish once again as Rockmart topped Cedartown 3-2 putting their runs over home plate in the bottom of the sixth after going scoreless all game.
Cedartown had put up a pair of runs in the early innings, getting hits on sophomore pitcher Ty Floyd who put up five innings of work on the night.
Then Rockmart came to bat in the bottom of the sixth, with Jack Haney working on the mound for the Bulldogs and having kept the Jackets from scoring all game, but two runners got on and with two outs, Haney delivered what he thought was going to be the final pitch of the inning. A fly ball to right field was the result to end the inning, and so the controversy begins.
Bulldogs head coach Doyle Kelley said the ball was caught and was being transitioned back to the infield. The defense headed toward the dugout, and runners headed back in to grab their gear, with Rockmart’s defense taking the field.
Jackets head coach Kenny Yanzetich said the ball was dropped, and that the runner that had rounded third and gotten to home plate should be scored, and his offense allowed to continue the inning.
So the argument began between coaches and umpires as to what actually happened, and the resulting decision from the first base umpire was this: the ball was dropped and Rockmart wasn’t out. However the didn’t get to score their run, and the batter who hit to right field was allowed to take first base instead.
Haney, back up on the mound, allowed three runs to score on hits following that, and Rockmart’s Johnathan Suppes was able to come up to the mound and close out the game for the win.
“Jack did all he could to give us a chance on the mound,” Kelley said. “He pitched a stellar game. It just didn’t work out there at the end.”
Yanzetich added that he felt Haney was “a heck of a competitor” throughout an evening that kept fans from both sides on their seats.
“It was a little crazy there toward the end,” Yanzetich said. “We just were lucky to get through that one right there.”
For Kelley’s part, he saw it as just another chapter in the long storied rivalry between the two schools.
“It was a Cedartown-Rockmart game,” Kelley said. “That is what you get no matter the sport being played. One of us had to lose and it was us. But that ball game was well played by both teams.”
Cedartown was originally set to host the first of the two games between the Bulldogs and Jackets this year in mid-Feburary, but wet weather and Rockmart’s first round state playoff games in boys and girls basketball forced the two teams to move the game around on the schedule.
Later this month, Rockmart heads to Cedartown on Monday, March 26 as the make-up date. The game is set to start at 6 p.m.