15U Stars reach state semifinals in Lebanon

Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Marshall County third baseman Dunn Crowder (12) bashes a bases loaded three-run double in the bottom of the fifth inning versus Manchester Saturday night in the Babe Ruth 15U state tournament in Lebanon. Photos by Anthony S. Puca

After rain washed out opening round play in the state tournament on Thursday, the 15U Babe Ruth all-stars took a 4-1 win over Franklin County on Friday at Charles A. Askew Field in Lebanon.

Marshall County followed that with a come from behind 14-6 blowout victory over Manchester in round two, before falling to nemesis Lawrenceburg 10-1 Sunday night.

Marshall County managed just three hits versus Franklin with one each coming from Chase Hensley, Blake Leonard, and Zack Gordon as all four runs they scored were unearned.

Connor Bush (1) gets Marshall County's first hit of the contest versus Manchester and would come around to score on a Cameron Isley RBI base hit as the 15U's won 14-6 Saturday night.

Head coach Bradley Maddox's squad scored three runs in the second and one more in the third inning with David Looney picking up the win on the mound in a solid three innings of work before Tanner Garvin came on in the fourth to finish up the contest for the save.

On Saturday, Leonard and Manchester's Dallas Bryan hooked up in a pitcher's duel for the first three innings before Connor Bush doubled to right field with one out in the bottom of the fourth and came home one out later on an RBI base knock by Cameron Isley.

Isley would score on a Manchester error with two outs to give Marshall County a 2-0 lead.

Cameron Isley (20) knocks in Marshall County's first run of the game in the fourth inning.

In the top of the fifth, Manchester found every hole in the Marshall County infield as bouncer after bouncer found their way through for base hits.

Five out of the six hits off Leonard in the frame never left the ground as Manchester scored six times before Looney came on in relief of Leonard on the hill with two outs.

Looney got out of the jam on a grounder to Lane Whitesell at second base, and in the bottom of the inning, Marshall County exploded with seven runs to take a 9-6 lead.

The big blow in the inning was a two-out, bases loaded double by Dunn Crowder that cleared the sacks.

Hensley would tie the game moments later on a base hit and Gordon gave Marshall County an 8-6 lead with a two-run single.

Hensley would cross home plate on a Manchester error with run number nine.

Looney struck out two out of the three batters he faced in the top of the sixth before his teammates put the game away in the bottom of the frame, scoring five more runs to take a 14-6 lead.

Isley knocked in one run in the inning on a sacrifice fly, Gordon drove in two more with a single to left field, and Chandler Harmon capped off the Marshall County scoring with a two-run single to right field.

Looney gave up two hits in the top of the seventh, but got a strikeout to end the game, sending Marshall County to a Sunday night winner's bracket game versus Lawrenceburg.

The last time these two squads met, Lawrenceburg came back from an 11-run deficit to beat Marshall County in the District 8 title game in Columbia on July 17.

This time it was not close in the nine-run win for Lawrenceburg, sending Marshall County to a loser's bracket contest versus Sparta on Monday.

The winner had to beat Lawrenceburg twice to claim the state title and a berth in the Southeast Region Tournament in Ocala, Florida, beginning on Aug. 2.