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MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Shortstop Brett Blackwood slammed a two-run homer in the first inning and third baseman Tyler Phillips added a solo blast in the fifth as Hartselle beat Spanish Fort 8-2 to take game one of the AHSAA Class 5A State Baseball Series Friday night.
In between the homers, the Tigers (43-15) posted five runs in in the third inning at Paterson Field and the defending state champion Toros (38-8) never recovered.
Coach William Booth's Tigers managed just six hits but took advantage of five walks and three Spanish Fort errors to give their coach his 906th career win. Winning pitcher Jackson Smith (9-1) hurled a complete game allowing just six hits and striking out two. Starter Ethan Walker (6-3) got the loss for Spanish Fort.
Phillips, batting ninth in the order, had two hits and three RBIs for Hartselle. Catcher Chris Brown also had an RBI double to highlight the third-inning rally.
Tyler Trammell had two hits and Will Luft had an RBI to pace Coach Brett Boyd's Toros.
Game two of the 5A Series is set for 10 a.m. Saturday at Riverwalk Stadium. Game three, if needed, will follow at approximately 1 p.m.
The games are being livestreamed via the AHSAA TV Network by digital partner Play On! Sports.