The journey to their first appearance to Baum Stadium has been challenging for the Spring Hill Bears baseball team.
The journey to their first appearance to Baum Stadium has been challenging for the Spring Hill Bears baseball team. The Bears competed in several big and close ball games that went the distance, but they were able to stay focused and secure the necessary key wins and plays made to stand as one of the top teams in the state for Class 2A. With only one home loss this entire season, the Bears showed they're a deep force and able to overcome adversities in hopes to claim their first ever state championship for their baseball program.
Head coach Rusty Winfield with assistant coach Cameron Brown kept the Bears ready and prepared for intense battles against productive baseball programs during the season. Despite some tough and heartbreaking defeats along the way, Winfield and Brown instilled team confidence in the Bears they're able to achieve their ultimate goal and prize.
The following is a look back at their journey on the diamond to earn their first trip to Baum Stadium for season 2017.
Bears battle against Fouke, Murfreesboro to begin diamond season 2017
The Spring Hill Bears got their taste of intense baseball action on the diamond for season 2017 in close battle against the Fouke Panthers and the Murfreesboro Rattlers during tournament competition hosted by Dierks. The Bears went the distance in a seven inning brawl falling short to Fouke 5-4. The Bears and Fouke both opened first inning play knotted 1-1 going into the second inning. Fouke crossed the plate for three runs with the Bears sparking for two runs. Fouke held a 4-3 advantage over Spring Hill heading into the third inning. Fouke remain with their one run lead through the fourth inning as the Bears sparked in the fifth to tie the game at 4-4 in the fifth inning. Fouke was held scoreless in the fifth, but the Panthers scored the game winning run in the sixth inning as the Bears fell short to rally in the sixth and seventh innings take the one run defeat.
At bat, Will Phillips had one hit with an RBI, Blake Waller recorded two hits (one double) with an RBI, Josh Winfield had three hits (two doubles) with two RBI's and Wesley Featherston finished with one hit (double). Winfield scored two runs, Featherston and Middleton each scored one run apiece. At the mound, Kaleb Blair pitched four innings and struck out two batters, Winfield pitched two innings. In the Bears next game during tournament competition, Spring Hill defeated Murfreesboro 7-1 for a dominating performance on the diamond. The Bears got on the scoreboard in the second inning scoring three runs, then crossed the plate once in the third and fourth innings. The Rattlers managed their lone run of the game in the fourth, but the Bears took a 5-1 lead entering into the fifth inning. The Bears sparked for their final two runs scored in the fifth as they held the Rattlers scoreless for four innings in the first, second, third and fifth defensively.
Bears victorious over Hornets in double-header
The Bears hosted their Hempstead County rivals' Blevins Hornets on the diamond for two battles of baseball competition in Spring Hill. The Bears would come out victorious in both games over the Hornets to conclude their scheduled series meetings for season 2017.
In the first game of their double-header, the Bears topped the Hornets 14-4 in five innings. Spring Hill sparked early to take 3-0 lead in the first inning. In the second, the Hornets crossed the plate to earn their first run of the game, but the Bears added four runs scored. Spring Hill lead Blevins 7-1 going into the third inning. Blevins sparked for one run scored in the third, then two runs in the fourth. The Bears sparked for four runs in the third, then two in the fourth inning to take a 13-4 advantage heading into the fifth and final inning of the game. In the fifth, the Bears finished out the game with one run scored for the 10 run victory and held Blevins scoreless in the first and fifth innings of their contest.
In the second game of their double-header, the Bears rolled to an 10-1 victory in four innings. The Hornets sparked in the first inning with one run, but the Bears sparked for three runs scored to take an 3-1 lead after opening inning play. In the second, the Bears scored three runs in the second, then four in the third for a 10-1 lead to conclude three innings of baseball. In the fourth, the Bears defensively held off the Hornets from scoring to go onto victory with Spring Hill sweeping their series meeting 2-0.
Bears sweep wins hosting Rison and Mineral Springs
The Bears built themselves some winning momentum on the diamond in their previous battles at home to pick up victories against the Rison Wildcats 12-8, then sweeping a double-header against the Mineral Springs Hornets in baseball action. As a result, the Bears improved to 6-1 overall.
Bears 8-1, rolling on winning-streak
The Bears continued to keep the pace rolling on the diamond to secure another double-header sweep in baseball action against the Trinity Christian Warriors in Spring Hill. Bears' Blake Waller and Wesley Featherston each recorded home runs against the Warriors during their battles on the diamond.
Bears sweep conference series against Rison; Winfield homers in road victory
The Spring Hill Bears continued their winning ways on the road to defeat the Rison Wildcats 6-4 in seven innings and sweep their conference series in baseball action during the spring break.
Bears fall in heartbreaking road loss to Camden Harmony Grove 10-9; Shutout Bearden to remain unbeaten at home
The Bears went to war on the diamond for a competitive showdown in road baseball action earlier this week against the Camden Harmony Grove Hornets for conference play in Camden. The Bears and the Hornets provided a close match-up that went the distance, but CH Grove sparked big in the seventh inning to edge visiting Spring Hill 10-9. The loss gave the Bears their first conference defeat this season and snapping a nine game-winning streak.
Bears seek redemption, defeat Camden Harmony Grove at home
Continuing their unbeaten streak of home wins on the diamond, the Spring Hill Bears got their taste of redemption Monday night to prevail over the Camden Harmony Grove Hornets 11-7 in seven innings of baseball action in Spring Hill. In the first meeting in Camden, the Bears suffered a heartbreaking one run loss 10-9 to the Hornets to end their nine game winning streak. This time in the second meeting, the Bears took care of business and pull off an impressive victory to remain undefeated at home this season.
Bears secure victory over Lafayette County, split conf. series against Parkers Chapel
In the league series finale, the Bears closed out their conference meeting against Parkers Chapel in a close battle. The Bears fought hard to the end, but fell short to the PC Trojans 5-4 in seven innings. PC led early with a 2-0 lead through the second inning, then scored two more runs in the third inning and one run in the fourth inning. PC maintained a 5-0 lead over Spring Hill through the fourth inning. In the fifth, the Bears rallied back sparking for one run then scored three runs in the sixth inning to hold the Trojans scoreless in the fifth and sixth innings. The Bears bounced back victorious on the diamond at home to remain unbeaten this season in Spring Hill to top the Lafayette County Cougars 8-1.
Bears sweep conference series against Lafayette County
The Bears concluded their series meetings for more road competition in Stamps to top the Lafayette County Cougars 23-1 and sweep the league season encounters.
Bears showcase tough fight in losses to Dierks, Murfreesboro
The Spring Hill Bears had tough battles on the diamond against well established baseball programs. The Bears hit the road to fall to the Dierks Outlaws in a double-header, then returned home to go down to the wire in a heartbreaking loss to the Murfreesboro Rattlers 11-7 on senior night in Spring Hill. The Bears loss to Murfreesboro were their first home defeat of the season.
Bears post dominant road win at Gurdon, No. 3 seed entering district tourney
The Bears brought their winning momentum back on the road to G-town and topped the Gurdon Go-Devils 13-3 in a seven inning encounter battle on the diamond. The Bears never trailed with an early spark posting two runs in the first inning and third innings, then one run in the fifth and three in the seventh inning.
Bears finish third at district, headed to Magnet Cove for regionals
The Bears opened 7-2A East District Baseball Tournament play victorious against Lafayette County 15-2 in five innings of action in Parkers Chapel. Due to their win, the Bears qualified for the 2A South Regional baseball tournament scheduled May 4-6 at Magnet Cove. The Bears advanced to the district tournament semifinals to face host team Parkers Chapel, but came up short 3-0. The Bears prevailed over Rison in the third place game to earn the No. 3 from the east to face host team Magnet Cove in the opening round of the 2A South Regional tournament hosted at Magnet Cove for a 19-8 overall.
Bears clinch state tourney berth, finish regionals third for No. 3 spot
The Bears made their appearance on the big stage in baseball to compete in the Class 2A state baseball tournament as the No. 3 seed from the East in East Poinsett County in Lepanto. The Bears officially clinched their spot to compete after finishing the 2A South Regional baseball tournament knocking off host tourney team the Magnet Cove Panthers 8-2 in opening round action at Magnet Cove. The Bears had to rally back from a 2-0 deficit through the second inning. The Bears tied the game up in the third inning the spark for two runs across home plate as their defense stood ground through the rest of the game. Spring Hill took the lead in the sixth inning scoring four runs and added two more runs in the seventh to hold the Panthers scoreless from the second through the seventh inning.
Bears advance to state semifinals, knocks off No. 1 seed BIC
The Spring Hill Bears had to overcome adversity to pull out a thrilling 7-6 victory against Pangburn Thursday May 11 in the opening round of the Class 2A state baseball tournament hosted in East Poinsett County in Lepanto. The Bears advanced to the quarterfinals to face No. 1 seed from the North Buffalo Island Central and topped the Mustangs 6-1 in an eight extra inning showdown to make history of advancing to the Class state baseball semifinals. The Bears improve their successful season on the diamond to 23-9 overall.
The Bears earned their way to the championship game after securing a 10-9 win against Palestine-Wheatley in Class 2A state baseball semifinals in East Poinsett County. As a result, the Bears are producing one of their best seasons on the diamond with a 20 plus win year to improve to 24-9 overall in 33 games played heading into the state baseball finals.