Westminster wins Class AAA state championship
Westminster sent coach Russell Wrenn out in style Saturday night, stunning two-time defending state champion Blessed Trinity with 2-1 and 7-6 victories to sweep the best-of-three Class AAA state championship series.
Wrenn is stepping aside to return home to Maryland and Westminster gave him the best going-away-gift possible -- the state baseball championship. It is the first baseball championship for the school since 1975.
Both teams competed in Region 4-AAA and Blessed Trinity (33-4) took a pair of regular-season victories to win the region title. But the Wildcats gutted out a pair of one-inning nail-biters to oust the Titans, who had won 14 straight postseason series.
Blake Huber's solo homer in the top of the fourth broke a 1-all tie in Game 1, then pitchers Kenneth Hartzfeld and Rankin Woley made it stand. Hartzfeld earned the victory, while Woley earned the save in the Game 1 victory. The duo combined to allow just a run on seven hits.
Woley then earned the save in Game 2 after Blessed Trinity loaded the bases with two outs and one of the Titans' top hitters at the plate in Conor Davis. After a quick visit from Wrenn, Woley got Davis to line into a fielder's choice at home plate to preserve the victory.
“I knew coach had confidence in me. There was never a doubt,” Woley told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “He just gave me a chance to catch my breath so I could lock in.”
The Wildcats scored three runs in the fifth to grab a 7-5 lead.
Huber earned the victory on the mound for Westminster (30-6).
Woley finished 2 for 4 with an RBI to lead the offense in Game 2. Shota Yasuda and Peter York each went 2 for 3. Yasuda added a double.
David Dunn went 3 for 4 in a losing effort for the Titans. Davis, Jake Bogosian and Garrett Dupuis each finished with two hits.
“We have 11 seniors and they were the strongest part of our team,” Wrenn told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “To see all this, first (championship) since 1975, it’s just unbelievable.”
Editor's Note: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and GameChanger contributed to this story