13U All Stars finish second in district

Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Marshall County's Landon Jones (10) drills his second homerun of the District 8 Tournament in Columbia Saturday night in an 11-1 win over Lawrenceburg. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

It all started so well for the Marshall County boys 13 year-old All-Stars as they dominated Giles County 15-2 in the opening round Friday night and followed that win up with an 11-1 thrashing over Lawrenceburg on Saturday.

However, on Sunday, the bottom dropped out in a weird 20-15 loss to Giles County in a game that was not finished until after the midnight hour, setting up a one game battle for the Babe Ruth District 8 title with the same Giles County squad on Monday.

The two longtime foes met in the 100-degree heat at Mahlon Ring Ball Park in Columbia for the showdown and once again, it all looked good as Marshall County led early before falling 9-7.

Marshall County's Landon Jones was on fire at the plate in the first two games, smashing a grand slam homerun versus Giles County in the opener and on Saturday, Jones drilled a two-run homer and got the win on the mound versus Lawrenceburg.

Ethan Poteete (2) rounds third base and gives Marshall County third base coach Seth Nance a high five after belting a solo homer in the fifth inning versus Lawrenceburg.

Bryce Oliver went 3-3 in Friday night's win and Ethan Poteete (2 RBIs) went off at the dish on Saturday with a 3-4 performance, including a solo shot in the fifth inning that put the game on ice.

Jones also went 3-4 and Ryan Yelensky netted two hits in three at bats (4 RBIs, 3 RS) in the five inning, run-rule win.

Wilson Limbaugh scored twice as he knocked one base hit and walked once, and Boone Sweeney, Derrick McKnight, and Josh McKnight all had one base hit.

On Saturday night, Marshall County needed just one win for the district title versus Giles County and after the visitors scored twice in the first inning, MC came back with five runs in the home half of the frame.

Sweeney had the big blow with a two-run double off the fence and Poteete, Yelensky, and Derrick McKnight drove home one run apiece as Marshall County went up 5-2.

Giles County scored two runs in the second inning and three more in the third to take a 7-5 lead, but Marshall County re-knotted the contest at seven on another RBI double from Sweeney and the game tying sacrifice fly off the bat of Oliver.

A homerun by Taylor Gilbert highlighted a four-run fourth inning for Giles as they took an 11-7 lead.

Limbaugh singled and scored on a passed ball in the home half of the frame and Poteete drove in Jones as MC cut the lead to 11-9.

Marshall County got sloppy on defense in the fifth and allowed three more runs as Giles County built their lead to 14-9.

In the bottom of the sixth, it was Giles County's turn to fumble about as Marshall County scored four runs on just one hit to trim the lead to a single run at 14-13.

The bottom fell out as the hour got late with Giles County scoring six runs in the top of the seventh.

A Poteete two-run dinger in the bottom of the inning kept hope alive for manager Mike Mills' squad, but Gilbert came in and got the last two outs to preserve the win for Giles County, setting up a Monday night showdown for the district hardware.

After a scoreless first inning, Marshall County jumped in front, scoring three runs in the top of the second on RBI hits from Sweeney and Oliver.

In the bottom of the third, Giles County put up a five-spot with the big blow coming off the bat of Chance Dyer, who drilled a two-run homer.

Jesse Pruitt (16) had two base hits and an RBI in the title game, but it was not enough as Giles County took home the District 8 hardware with a 9-7 win.

Marshall County re-tied the game at five in their next at bat on RBI's by Jesse Pruitt and Yelensky, but Giles County came back with two runs in the home half of the inning as Gilbert and Boone Gibson drove home one runner apiece.

Stuart Warner walked to lead off the fifth inning for Marshall County and Poteete was hit by a pitch to put runners on first and second.

Both runners advanced one base on a balk and they both trotted home on a sacrifice fly by Sweeney, coupled with an error on the Giles County right fielder to tie the game at seven.

Warner held firm on the mound for Marshall County in the bottom of the frame, retiring Giles County 1-2-3.

Marshall County was also set down 1-2-3 in the top of the sixth and Giles County took a two-run lead in the bottom of the inning on a two-run single by Rob McMasters.

Marshall County could not muster a comeback in the top of the seventh, going down quietly 1-2-3 to end the game.

Both squads qualified for the 13U State Tournament, beginning Friday in Johnson City.