Huge First Inning Sends Whitehouse to 11-5 Win Over Red Oak + Series Sweep
WHITEHOUSE -- Going deep into the playoffs is becoming the standard for the Whitehouse baseball program.
The Wildcats (23-8) pushed across seven runs in the first inning en route to an 11-5 series-clinching win over Red Oak in the Class 4A Region II bi-district playoffs on Friday.
Whitehouse advanced the area round for the third consecutive year under head coach Derrick Jenkins, and will face the winner between Sulphur Springs and Wylie East.
"We've had two good weeks of practice, " Jenkins said. "We hit against Corsicana real well last Saturday, and continued that last night (Game 1 against Red Oak). When you put up seven runs early, it's hard to match what you did in the first inning. You kind of lose that intensity level, but we tacked a few runs on here and there and never lost sight."
Whitehouse's Derek Clemons led the attack, going 2-for-4 with three RBIs, while Texas Tech commit Patrick Mahomes went 2-for-3 with two RBIs. Ryan Cheatham added two base hits and two runs batted in.
Cheatham picked up the win on the mound, going five innings and giving up four runs on five hits with four strikeouts. Peyton Conser pitched the remaining two frames, adding two strikeouts.
Whitehouse's Aaron Clemons started the first-inning barrage with an RBI triple, scoring Michael Nuon. Mahomes drove the very next pitch off the base of the left-center wall, giving the Wildcats the 2-0 lead.
After Jared Raabe was hit by a pitch, Derek Clemons slapped a single into left, making it 3-0. Then, Cheatham went opposite field for a two-RBI single, pushing the lead to 5-0. That chased Red Oak starter Caleb Horton, but Whitehouse wasn't finished.
Nuon followed with a two-run single over the shortstop's head, giving Whitehouse a seven-run first inning.
"When I first arrived, it was nice to see the 18- and 19-win seasons," Jenkins said. 'Now, you are seeing we expect to win 20 games. We expect to be in the second round of the playoffs. Hopefully as we move on, the kids will expect to be in third and fourth round. But you're starting to see that as a community and with the kids that they expect to go a little farther than the year before."
Red Oak (15-18) picked up two runs in the second on a Chance Pryor single. But Whitehouse's Jake Parker answered with an RBI groundout, pushing the margin to 8-2 after two innings.
"Right now, for us, going to the second round isn't good enough," Jenkins said. "We want to be in the third and fourth rounds and ultimately our goal will be Austin (UIL state baseball tournament)."
Whitehouse 11, Red Oak 5
Class 4A Region II Bi-District Playoffs
(Whitehouse wins series, 2-0)
Red Oak 020 111 0 -- 5 6 3
Whitehouse 710 201 x -- 11 9 1
Red Oak: Caleb Horton, Nathan Weyrauch, Aaron Thompson and Jacob Crutchfield. Whitehouse: Ryan Cheatham, Peyton Conser and Derek Clemons.
WP -- Cheatham.
LP -- Horton.
2B -- Whitehouse: Patrick Mahomes.
3B -- Whitehouse: Aaron Clemons.
Records -- Red Oak: 15-18. Whitehouse: 23-8.