The South Georgia State College Hawks are headed to the East Central District Championship tournament in Morristown, Tennessee, this week after finishing second in the Georgia Collegiate Athletic Conference (GCAA) tournament Saturday afternoon.
The Hawks entered the tournament as a #2 seed, behind the regular season champion Darton State College Cavaliers. The top six teams in the GCAA played the tournament in Albany on the campus of Darton State. SGSC received a first-round bye and didn’t play its first game until Thursday afternoon.
The Hawks beat Georgia Highlands 4-1 the fell to Darton State 4-2. SGSC dropped into the loser’s bracket and promptly beat West Georgia Technical College 13-6 to earn a berth in the championship game against rival Darton State. To win the tournament, the Hawks would have to beat Darton State twice.
The Cavaliers left nothing to chance, however, and jumped out to an early 3-1 lead after freshman catcher John Cable launched a three-run home run in the first inning. Darton State would never give up its lead and went on to handle the Hawks 19-3.
In 2011, before the merger with Waycross College when South Georgia State was still the South Georgia College Tigers, South Georgia went to the East Central District Championship and won the tournament, earning a spot in the Junior College World Series in Grand Junction, Colorado. The Hawks’ head coach, Jeff Timothy, was an assistant back then to Scott Sims. He would love to win the tournament and return to Grand Junction. “This is the same situation we were in four years ago. We went into the tournament as a second seed and peaked at the right time. We ended up winning the tournament and punching a ticket to Grand Junction. We’re excited about the opportunity to return to the tournament. This team has played their hearts out all year and I really like our chances this week,” says Coach Timothy.
The East Central District tournament begins May 14 on the Walters State College baseball field in Morristown. Along with Darton State and SGSC, Walters State and Chattanooga State College will play for the championship.