Griffin High's teams didn’t win region titles in April, but one Bears team went further — the Griffin High rifle team won a state championship and junior William Cross won the individual riflery title this month.
On April 1, the Jags continued their baseball win streak with a 10-8 win over Henry County on the road.
On April 2, the Griffin High rifle team won the team’s first state title ever as co-captain William Cross wins the title for GHS with the last two shots, both 10s. Later in the day, Cross came from behind to win the individual rifle state title. The win was Griffin’s first team state title since the 2003 boys basketball team won it all.
“On the last two shots, I finally calmed down,” Cross said after the win.
On April 4, the Griffin Christian baseball team won its only game of the month, a 3-1 victory over the Atlanta Knights at Nix Field. Mitch Kimbell’s RBI single was the game-winning hit.
On April 5, the Jags baseball team beats second-place Locust Grove 5-3 for sole possession of first place in Region 4-AAA. Casey Moody pitched a complete-game four hitter with 7 strikeouts and 0 walks. Matt Hayes’ RBI single late was the game-winning hit. Also on that day, the Jags boys golf team placed second by a stroke at the North Georgia Classic Tournament in Dahlonega, Ga., a tourney where SHS was the defending champs. Senior Davin White finished as the low medalist for the second straight year.
On April 8, the Jags baseball team whips East Coweta (the No. 1 team in Class AAAAA) 13-1 on the road thanks to a strong performance from Dylan Griffin, who homered and tripled.
On April 11, the Griffin Lady Bears tennis team suffers a 4-1 loss to Region 3-AAAA Div. A to Jones County, ending its season.
On April 12, the Spalding High Lady Jags soccer team wins the first Region 4-AAA title of the spring, defeating Eagle’s Landing 1-0 on the road thanks to a rebound goal by Li Anne Harris in the second half. It’s the Lady Jags’ fourth region title in seven years. Also on that day, the Jags baseball team was elevated to No. 1 in Class AAA by the Gaprepcountry.com baseball poll.
Other newsworthy sports happenings in the area included:
* Griffin’s soccer teams lose 10-0 to the McIntosh High boys and girls in the opening round of the Region 3-AAAA playoffs, ending their seasons. (Apr. 12)
* The Griffin baseball team beats Woodland 6-4 at home, breaking its 10-game losing streak. Tyler Powell pitched a complete-game 7-hitter with 6 strikeouts and 1 walk and Quantico Dodson and John Pope homered for the Bears. (Apr. 13)
* The Spalding boys golf team shoots a season-low 147 in a 3-way match win over Harris County and Opelika at Callaway Gardens while the Spalding baseball team wins its first game as the No. 1 state-ranked team in AAA, an 8-0 victory over Jackson High for its 16th straight win. (Apr. 13)
* Teron Jones is named the new Faith Christian Academy head football coach, replacing Nelson Grist who stepped down. Jones, an assistant coach on the team, is the second African-American head coach hired in the area. (Apr. 13)
* The Spalding boys tennis team finishes Region 4-AAA runner up to Eagle’s Landing with a 3-2 loss. It’s the second straight year as runners-up for SHS. (Apr. 14)
* The Griffin baseball team upsets No. 4 state-ranked Northgate 5-4 on the road, getting a complete-game 5-hitter from Wesley Morris and a game-winning RBI single from Montico Dodson. (Apr. 15)
* The Spalding girls track team placed second at the Jefferson Relays, with Grenishia Daniel setting a school record in the 300 hurdles and the Spalding sprint medley relay team breaking their meet record. (Apr. 16)
* The Spalding boys golf team wins the Region 4-AAA title for the second straight year, shooting a school-record 289 at Canongate at Heron Bay Golf Club. (Apr. 18)
* The Lady Jags and Jags tennis teams win opening-round state playoff games; Lady Jags beat Howard 3-1, Jags blank Perry 3-0. (Apr. 18)
* The Spalding baseball team clinches the Region 4-AAA title by beating Sandy Creek 19-4 and getting an 8-6 loss by second-place Locust Grove to put SHS 2 games up with 1 to play. Spalding’s Dylan Griffin had a grand slam, his second in three days. (Apr. 21)
* The Spalding girls track and field team wins the Region 4-AAA championship for the first time in team history. (Apr. 25)
* Corey Moore of Griffin High qualifies for the state AAAA track meet in the triple jump in the first day of the Region 3-AAAA Track & Field Meet. Teammate Chandler Worthy (200 m dash) and the Bears 4x1 relay team also qualify. (Apr. 25-26)
* The Spalding girls tennis team advances to the Elite 8 by beating Richmond Academy 3-2, while the boys lose 4-1 to 10th-ranked Americus-Sumter in the quarterfinals, ending their season. (Apr. 26)
* The Spalding baseball team wins its 21st straight game to leap to 23-1. The 10-0 romp over East Coweta was its final win of April. (Apr. 27)
* The FCA boys golf team beats Heritage 184-229 in sub state playoff action at the Griffin Country Club, advancing to the ICSGA state finals match May 5. (Apr. 28)
EDITOR’S NOTE: This is the fourth in a 12-part series conducted by the Griffin Daily News highlighting the top sports stories of 2011. This will culminate in a top 10 stories list on Dec. 31, 2011.