The Class AAAAA Indians (6-12 overall, 4-2 subregion) started the game with a pair of runs in the top of the first inning, but RBIs by Xavier Randolph and Greg Fietsam scored Tim Beckham and Telvin Nash in the bottom of the inning to tie the score at 2-2.
East Coweta added a run in top of the second inning, but it would be all the offense the team could produce as Barnhart shut the Indians down in the final five innings.
Griffin tied the game at 3-3 in the bottom of the third inning on Nash’s sacrifice fly that scored Beckham from third. The Bears (11-3, 5-0) took the lead later in the inning on an RBI by Todd Hammond to score Randolph.
The Bears extended their lead in the fourth inning on a two-RBI hit by Nash to score Beckham and Randolph. Barnhart and Victor Gamble scored in the bottom of the fifth inning on an error by the East Coweta pitcher to give the Bears an 8-3 lead.
“The biggest thing was our defense tonight,” Griffin coach Jamie Cassady said. “We played solid defense, didn’t make any errors and cash threw strikes. That was the difference in the game.
“Cash is going to throw strikes. We just need to make the plays behind him.”
Wednesday’s win marked the sixth straight victory for the Bears, who resume their subregion play on Friday with a road game against Forest Park (3-14, 3-4).
“Tim (Beckham)’s settled in now, and everybody else is building around him, so we’re starting to play pretty well right now,” Cassady said.