Photo: Karl L. Moore Mill Creek's Logan Moseley (4) is greeted at home plate by Brandon Harmon (9) and Bryan Hudson after hitting a 2-run home run during game 2 of the state playoffs against Roswell Thursday at Mill Creek High School.
HOSCHTON -- After falling by the slimmest of margins in the opener, Mill Creek left no doubt in Game 2 as the Hawks blanked Roswell 8-0 in the best-of-three series in the second round of the Class AAAAAA state baseball tournament.
Roswell (19-11) had taken Game 1 by a 7-6 score, but Mill Creek came out on fire in the nightcap to split the doubleheader and force a winner-take-all Game 3 today at 5 p.m. at Fathers Field.
"I felt like we had a little momentum going in the end of that first game and a chance to win or at least tie it up," said Mill Creek head coach Doug Jones. "So I thought it was important that we come out in the second game and feed off that and we did. We got the lead early and we were aggressive swinging the bats."
The Hawks struck quickly with a five-run first inning in Game 2 to knock out Roswell starting pitcher Trent Corbett as Logan Moseley cranked a two-run homer to left field to make it 2-0 just two batters into the game.
Will Zimmer added a run-scoring double to make it 3-0, followed by Kyle Abernathy's two-run double that upped the lead to 5-0 before Roswell came to the plate.
Mill Creek (22-9) added a run in the second on Tyler Boldt's RBI double to increase the lead to 6-0.
That was followed by Brandon Harmon's RBI double and Moseley's sacrifice fly to make it 8-0 after three innings as Mill Creek sent 22 batters to the plate and pounded out nine hits in the first three frames.
The Hawks collected 11 hits, including two each from Harmon, Boldt and Bryan Hudson.
Meanwhile, winning pitcher Shane Seckinger was in control on the mound for Mill Creek and held Roswell scoreless through 5 innings of work.
Seckinger allowed six hits, struck out nine and walked one.
"Shane did another nice job on the mound to get us back in the series," said Jones. "He's been in these situations before and he knows what's expected of him. I wish his pitch count had been a little lower, but you have to win to keep on playing and we will tomorrow. We need Shane to win us a ballgame and he did."
Jack Fleming came on to work the final 1 innings and finish out the six-hit shutout.
A five-run fourth inning proved to be the difference for Roswell in Game 1 as the Hornets erased an early 2-0 deficit and then hung on for the one-run win.
Mill Creek had gone on top with single runs in the first and third, thanks to a wild pitch and an RBI single by Walker Boyd.
But the Hawks also had the bases loaded in the first two innings and could only manage the first-inning run.
That left the door open for Roswell and the Hornets sent 11 to the plate and struck for five runs in the fourth to take a 5-2 lead.
Mitchell Benson singled home two runs to tie the game at 2-2 and Adam Terrinoni followed with an RBI double to make it 3-2.
Roswell added two more runs in the inning off Mill Creek starter Cody Pugh when Lawson Dunkin singled to extend the Hornets' lead to 5-2.
Mill Creek scored a solo run in the bottom half of the fourth when Moseley doubled to make it 5-3.
But Roswell answered with a two-spot in the fifth when Matt Meeder singled home a pair to up the lead to 7-3.
Mill Creek continued to peck away and put single runs on the scoreboard in the fifth and sixth.
Jacob Freeland's RBI groundout in the fifth cut the deficit to two and Bryan Hudson's run-scoring single in the sixth got Mill Creek within striking distance at 7-5.
But the Hawks could only get another run home in the seventh and left the tying run at third to end the game.
Mill Creek left 11 runners on base, including eight in scoring position.
The Hawks' 10-hit attack was led by Hudson's three hits while Moseley, Boyd and Harmon each had two hits.
Syd Hopkins picked up the win on the mound for Roswell while Austin Krzeminski got the save.