Josh Milam’s RBI double in the sixth inning catapulted Thomasville to a 4-0 win over Cairo, giving the Bulldogs a season sweep of the Syrupmakers.
Milam, pinch hitting in the nine-hole, brought home Chapman O’Quinn and Morgan Meyers with a swift swing amid the crisp South Georgia night.
Thomasville had scored twice that inning when Meyers beat out an infield grounder that brought home Oren King, then drew a walk with the bases loaded.
Other than the few fireworks the Bulldogs lit in the sixth inning, Monday’s match was a quiet one from the plate.
Thomasville had no hits to that point, and Cairo had just three overall, two of which came from leadoff shortstop Cage Cox, who is batting above .400.
Both teams relied heavily on performances from the hill.
Matthew Green, who pitched for Thomasville in its last meeting with Cairo on March 13, tossed all seven innings.
“Really, we were only trying to get him in for three or four innings, but he ended up pitching really well, so we stuck with him,” said Brice Warner, who was filling in for Erik McDougald as head coach on Monday. “He was lights out the whole game.”
Best added that he thought his ace, Bailey Lewis, pitched his best game of the season, but added that a lack of plate adjustments was the determining factor.
“We had scoring opportunities, but weren’t able to make the adjustments at the plate to [Green], who we’ve seen before,” Best said. “We just weren’t able/willing to make the adjustment needed.”
Yet to that point, both squads played fundamentally sound in the field.
Bulldogs shortstop Payton Dixon made a polished throw to earn the third out of the fourth innng.
Cairo center fielder Brick Kinni had back-to-back leaping snags in the outfield during the middle stages.
And Meyers launched a cannon-like throw from center field to prevent a Cairo runner from tagging from third base in the fifth.
“It was definitely a defensive driven game today,” Warner said. “Two teams that are hitting their strides down the stretch.”
Both teams now eye their final stretch of region games as the end of the season draws near.
Cairo (10-12, 9-2), which has all but locked up a spot in the state tournament, plays top-ranked Crisp County on the road on Thursday.
Thomasville (12-9, 4-5) travels to Cook on Thursday, where it will continue its hunt to make a last-push for the postseason.
The Bulldogs play another non-region game on Tuesday against Jefferson County, but nearly no one mentioned it after Monday’s win.
“Our sights are really on region play,” Warner said. “We didn’t really put too much into this game at all.”
NOTE: Warner acted as head coach in McDougald’s place due to a funeral the latter was attending on Monday. McDougald, who arrived in the fourth inning, will resume his role for Tuesday’s tilt with Jefferson.