By Doug Gorman
CONYERS - Henry County pitcher Matt Clark threw a no-hitter through three innings and the Warhawks led Heritage 1-0 in the first game of the best-of-three series in the semifinals of the Class AAAA state playoffs on Tuesday.
In the end, however, none of that mattered as rain was the real winner again, washing out the final-four series for the second day in a row. The game will now be replayed from the beginning.
The two teams will return to Heritage High School again today for a doubleheader. Game one is set to begin at 5 p.m.
Matt Clark struck out four Heritage batters, including the side in order in the third and allowed one other base runner when he started the game with a walk, but he won't return to the mound tomorrow.
"No I wouldn't do that to the kid," said Henry County head coach Troy Baker. "His stock is too valuable. That's not my philosophy."
The ball will now be put in the hands of sophomore pitcher Jason Heyward.
"We have all the confidence in Jason," said Troy. "We have plenty of good arms on this staff, and tomorrow it will be Jason's turn."
Clark found himself in a pitchers' duel with Heritage starter Trent Dooley, who gave up two hits and struck out seven.
The Warhawks scored their only run of the game in the top of the second when Greg Lindsey walked with the bases loaded, scoring Greg Huff.
One batter earlier, Blake Newalu kept the inning alive with a base hit.
In the team's series against Marist, Newalu ripped a game-winning double to move the Warhawks into the state final four for the first time in school history.
The winner of the Henry County and Heritage series will play Lee County.
Lee County is the ranked No.1 in the gasports.com coaches' poll.
Lee County managed to get is series in on Monday, sweeping Evans.
Eagle's Landing Christian Academy, which is participating in the Class A Final Four, is still trying to start its series with Mt. Paran. That series has also been rained out two straight days.