Rutherford Advances Past Choctaw to District Final

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Panama City, FL---Day two of do-or-die action kicked off Tuesday as district baseball tournaments continued around the state.

At Bay High in the District 5A-1 tournament, three-seed Choctaw advanced to the semifinals to face up against two-seed Rutherford who advanced via bye. Choctaw had momentum in their favor following a quarterfinals win over Arnold Monday, while Rutherford was able to rest.

Rest bested momentum when it came to the outcome.

The Rams scored two runs in the first, one in the third, four in the fourth, the big run coming from Nick Nelson's solo home run, and three the rest of the way, leading to their 10-4 win.

With the victory, Rutherford moves to 20-4 and advances to the the 5A-1 finals, along with earning a bid to the state championships. They'll face top-seed Mosley after the Dolphins defeated Bay 9-2 in the other semifinal. First pitch of the championship is set for 7 PM Thursday.

In the highlights attached above, the Rams, up 2-zip already, in the second, two outs, T.Y. Reese singles to left, A.J. Thornton scores, but Jaquez Koonce thrown out at third, so Choctaw ends the inning and looks to work their way back in the third.

Robbie Gilpatrick, with runners at first and second, bloops to right, the throw home, not in time as Chase Whitehead scores so it's 3-1. But Rams pitcher Nick Nelson wouldn't only get out of the jam.

He'd help his own cause at the dish, big time. Drives this deep to left that flies out of the frame but over the fence. A solo shot that was one of four runs in the third.

Rutherford ads three more later, winning 10-4 and advancing the state tournament and Thursday's championship, where they'll face the winner of tonight's