It was Senior Day at Bulloch Academy but a senior from the other team stole the show.
John Milledge Academy pitcher Jordan Demmon hurled a masterful one-hit shutout, keeping the Gators off-balance to lead the Trojans to a 5-0 region victory.
Demmon had a no-hitter going into the bottom of the seventh inning but BA junior second baseman Loy Waters broke it up when he lined a single to left with two outs.
“Jordan had really good stuff today,” said JMA head coach Justin Mills, whose squad secured the GISA Region 4-AAA title with the win. “He has three pitches; a two-seam fastball that runs in on righties, a curveball and a change-up that runs away from lefties. When he has command of all three like he did today, it’s tough for anybody to hit him.”
Demmon faced just 24 batters, striking out eight and walking one. Only three Gators reached base. Hunter Jacobs reached first on an error in the third, Chris Young drew a walk in the fourth and Waters had the lone Gator hit in the seventh.
John Milledge (8-5 overall, 8-0 GISA Region 4-AAA) played almost flawless defense.
“I think we have given up two total runs in our region games,” Mills said. “We preach defense, defense, defense to the guys. We say that if you hold other teams to zero runs, you aren’t going to lose any games. Our defense did a very good job today.”
While the Gator defense was just as good or maybe even better than the Trojans, the visitors played better offense, tagging BA pitching for five runs on seven hits. Blake Harrington led JMA, going 2-for-4 with two RBI.
Freshman Joshua Bishop got the call for the Gators (7-6, 2-6) and got off to a rocky start in the opening inning, giving up three runs on two hits, two walks and a hit batter.
But the big righty settled down to pitch five scoreless innings. He even calmly pitched his way out of trouble in the third when JMA threatened with bases loaded. Bishop also picked off a runner at second in the sixth.
“He settled down after the first inning and kept us in the game,” BA head coach Dennis Dove said.
The freshman went six innings, allowing three runs on four hits. He struck out four and walked five. Hunter Jacobs pitched the seventh, giving up two runs on three hits.
Graduating seniors Jacobs, Young, Clayton Rogers, Erik Renew and Connor Reed were honored, along with their parents, in the afternoon’s pre-game ceremonies.
Bulloch travels to Martinez on Friday to play region foe Augusta Prep. The Gators then have two more region games, hosting Trinity Christian in a make-up date game April 23 and continuing a postponed game with Augusta Prep on April 24. Bulloch will end its regular season April 30.