Cook, Booton lead sweep as LaGrange wins 14th in a row, beats East Forsyth to reach AAAA semifinals
Published 10:41 pm Friday, May 5, 2023
LaGrange just keeps on winning. With its sweep of East Forsyth in the quarterfinals of the AAAA state playoffs on Friday, LaGrange has won 14 games in a row heading to its semifinal matchup next week at The Branch.
LAGRANGE – 9
EAST FORSYTH – 1
While game one saw the Grangers grind out a tough 3-2 win with some late game heroics, game two was pure domination for those in blue and white with the Grangers winning 9-1.
Trey Cook got the action started in the top of the third by driving in a run with a single. This was just part of a big night for Cook, who starred in both games.
“It was a really fun night tonight,” Cook said. “The team really came together and played well tonight.”
Cook finished game two with the only multi-hit game from a Granger, going 3-for-4 with a run scored and an RBI.
Gryson Cockrell grounded out to drive in a second run in the inning and give LaGrange a 2-0 lead. The Broncos answered back with a run in the bottom of the third, but that was the closest the game would get as the Grangers blew the game open with seven runs in the top of the fifth.
Seth Stargell drove in the first run of the inning when he was hit by a pitch with the bases loaded. Cockrell drove in the next two runs on a double. Stargell and Cole Garner scored on separate wild pitches later in the inning before Tanner Langley doubled to bring home the final run of the inning for LaGrange.
The Grangers were in complete control from there.
Trevor Booton got the start on the mound and pitched a complete game for the Grangers. He was in total command, allowing just three hits and one earned run on nine strikeouts.
“When the offense is rolling like that, it makes it so much easier for me and takes a big load off the pitching staff,” Booton said. “You have to trust yourself in those big games and just keep calm and focus on the task at hand.”
Robbie Parker, Cooper Stephens, Preston Pressley, Rob Skinner, Langley, Cockrell and Garner all had a hit apiece in the game.
LAGRANGE – 3
EAST FORSYTH – 2
LaGrange High used some key offensive late to sneak by East Forsyth 3-2 in game one. Tanner Langley was the hero, delivering a two-out RBI triple in the bottom of the sixth inning to give the Grangers a 3-2 lead they would never relinquish.
Langley was not the only Granger who put in a Herculean effort in game one. Cook was sensational for LaGrange at the plate and on the mound. At the plate, he was the only Granger to have multiple hits, going 2-for-3 with a key RBI coming on a double to break the deadlock in the bottom of the third inning, after which he unleashed some dance moves to prepare for prom on Saturday.
“Rob (Skinner) sent us all a TikTok (video) of somebody doing the sprinkler,” Cook said. “We are getting ready for prom, and it really gets the dugout going.”
Cook was even more integral to the Granger win on the mound, where he threw a complete game, striking out 10 and allowing just five hits and two earned runs.
“The atmosphere is electric,” Cook said. “It’s crazy out there. My adrenaline is pumping, but once you get in there and settle down, you start to treat it like any other game.”
No inning exemplified his dominance quite like the fourth in which the Broncos loaded the bases with one out and Cook was able to get a strikeout and then a ground out to end the inning without conceding a run.
After Cook gave the Grangers a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the third, Stargell did his job by flying out to center field to drive in a second run. The game would stay tied at 2-0 until East Forsyth scored two runs in the top of the fifth to tie the game.
Robbie Parker, Cooper Stephens and Langley all had a hit apiece in the game. Pressley, Skinner and Stephens all scored a run each.
LaGrange will host the winner of the Wayne County/Lovett series in the state semifinals next Saturday for games one and two with a potential game three on Monday, pending any changes.