7 Patriots named All-Region
Two from Rockdale Co., four from Salem honored

Heritage not only had the most successful season of any of the Rockdale County schools, reaching the second round of the Class AAAA playoffs, but the Patriots also had seven players named to the All-Region 8-AAAA team.

Junior catcher Tyler Austin, whose draft stock continued to soar with another impressive season, led a group of four Patriots on the first team. Joining Austin are junior shortstop Nick Woodward, junior outfielder Joseph Lester and senior pitcher Anthony Bazzani.

Heritage had four others make the second team: senior outfielder Zane Barefield, junior infielder Ryan Cochran, senior pitcher Kelvan Diaz, a junior who won the clinching game in the first round against South Paulding, and Austin.

Austin, who also made the second team as a pitcher, picked up hitter of the year honors, while Rockdale County's Buck Farmer, a Georgia Tech commitment, was selected as the region's pitcher of the year.

Slick-fielding junior shortstop Nakeem Forte also made the first team for Rockdale County, which lost five of its last eight games to finish out of the playoffs for the third consecutive season.

Salem, which also had a non-playoff season a year after reaching the Class AAAA final four, had just one first-team performer: sophomore outfielder Cameron Gibson. The Seminoles ace, senior Brandon Crumbley (Augusta State commit), and junior outfielder Josh Bailey made the second team.

Loganville head coach Jeff Segars, who guided the Red Devils to the Class AAAA final four after the 2008 won the state title, was named coach of the year.