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High school baseball: Cherokee Bluff takes down West Hall 4-0 to earn Region 7-3A series win
Cherokee Bluff's Chandler Shope delivers a pitch during the game against West Hall on Friday, March 19 at West Hall High School. - photo by Nathan Berg

Cherokee Bluff closed the door on its first Region 7-3A series of the season Friday evening with a 4-0 road win over West Hall. The game was a defensive battle for much of the night, but a 3-run third inning was enough to power the Bears to the victory, their second over the Spartans in as many days. 

“West Hall’s got a good team,” Cherokee Bluff coach Jeremy Kemp said. “I was proud of our guys. It was a big win.”

Chandler Shope started for the Bears and struck out five over five innings. On offense, Cherokee Bluff got RBIs from Bryce England, Clay Tyas and Ben Jenkins. 

Kyle Murphy started for the Spartans and got six strikeouts in a complete game while allowing four runs. 

The teams combined for just one hit in a defensive pair of opening innings, but the Bears broke the stalemate with a much more productive third. 

Tyas put Cherokee Bluff on the board with an RBI single, and Murphy launched a double to centerfield a few batters later to bring in two more runs and put the Bears up 3-0. 

West Hall stayed strong defensively outside of that inning, but struggled at the plate, going hitless for the first four frames. 

Jenkins doubled to left field in the fifth to bring in another Cherokee Bluff run, but that was all the scoring either team would do for the remainder of the game. 

Shope was relieved by Braxton Beal in the fifth, and the Bears finisher closed things out by giving up just one hit in the last 2 ⅔ innings of the game, picking up six strikeouts to finish things off. 

Following the series victory to start region play, Kemp said he’s going to focus on not letting his players get complacent as they begin the most important stretch of the regular season. 

“Just going to not try to get too high,” he said. “We’re going to keep working, getting better.”