From staff reports
The Eagle's Landing Christian Academy Chargers are going to the Final 4.
The Chargers beat No. 1-ranked Schley County 8-1 Wednesday on the road to advance to the semifinals of the Class A state baseball tournament. The Chargers split with Schley Tuesday, winning the first game 9-4 and falling the second game 12-1 in five innings.
"I believe in my team but I'm totally shocked they've been able to achieve what they have," ELCA head coach Joe Shadowens said. "They have so much heart. They came back and refused to lose. They played good team baseball. I'm ecstatic."
ELCA plays host to Region 5-A rival Mt. Paran Monday with a doubleheader starting at 5 p.m. If needed, game 3 will be at noon on Tuesday. The Chargers have already beaten Mt. Paran three times this season.
Region 5-A had three representatives in the quarterfinals with ELCA, Mt. Paran and Landmark.
"All year long all we heard was how weak Region 5 was," Shadowens said. "I'm very proud of the teams. Landmark represented Region 5 well. When you have two of the four Final 4 teams, that's got to stand for something."
Christian White pitched a complete game Tuesday with four strikeouts.
Brian Satterfield went 2-for-4 with three RBIs, White went 2-for-2, Doug Campbell went 3-for-4 with two RBIs and Brian Moss went 2-for-3 with two RBIs.
The game was scoreless going into the third inning.
ELCA got on the board in the third when White drove in Bradley Eady. Campbell followed with a hit and Brian Moss collected a base hit to drive in White, giving ELCA a 2-0 lead.
Schley scored a run in the fourth to cut the lead to 2-1 but ELCA answered with three runs in the fifth.
ELCA loaded the bases with basehits by Zach Werho and Satterfield and a White walk.
Campbell singled to score Werho and Moss followed with a sacrifice fly to bring Satterfield home. ELCA pushed the lead to 5-1 when pinch runner Alex Teate scored on a wild pitch.
Matt Henry led off the sixth with a single and Eady walked. Satterfield ripped a two-run double and Campbell gave ELCA an 8-1 lead when he doubled to score Satterfield.
In the bottom of the seventh, Schley loaded the bases but White struck out the final Schley batter to end the game.
"It feels really, really good," Shadowens said. "I'm just proud of the guys. They are so confident and that makes them work harder."
This is ELCA's first season in the Georgia High School Association after competing in the Georgia Independent School Association for several years.
Three years ago, the Chargers made it to the GISA Class AA Final 4 and the next year, they made it to the quarterfinals in Class AAA, the GISA's largest classification.
Last year, ELCA qualified for the state playoffs but lost in the first round to eventual GISA Class AAA state champion Southland.