Andalusia’s Ross Graham allowed no runs on two hits, struck out two and got the win for the Bulldogs in his first outing this season Tuesday. | Andrew Garner/Star-News
Andalusia’s Ross Graham allowed no runs on two hits, struck out two and got the win for the Bulldogs in his first outing this season Tuesday. | Andrew Garner/Star-News

Bulldogs sweep Tigers

Published 12:02am Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Thirty-five.

That’s how many pitches Andalusia junior Ross Graham was alloted Tuesday in his first outing as his Bulldogs played rival Straughn in a doubleheader.

Graham pitched three innings, allowed no runs on two hits and struck out two batters for the win, which set the pace for the Bulldogs in a 3-0 game one victory.

AHS scored three runs in the top of the fifth, and Straughn threatened late in the second game in a 4-3 win for the Bulldogs.

Quinton Maddox earned the second-game win, allowing three runs on five hits and two walks in five innings.

“I thought we pitched well all day,” AHS coach Jonathan Rasberry said. “Quinton didn’t have his stuff (in the second game). We battled up there.

“I thought Ross, for his first outing of the year, pitched really well,” he said.

Straughn coach John Fussell said his boys didn’t take advantage of opportunities in both games.

“I think we challenged them,” Fussell said. “We didn’t take advantage of some opportunities, but I thought our kids did some good things.”

Game 2

Andalusia 4, Straughn 3

Andalusia got on board in the bottom of the first with two outs as courtesy runner Peyton Maddox scored on a RBI single from hot-hitter Brandon Smith.

Straughn answered after Daryl George reached on a single to left to start the inning.

Chase Short in the three hole spot, hit a fly out to score George and the game was tied 1-1 after the first.

Maddox and Straughn lefty Tucker Lawless threw three straight scoreless innings for their teams.

Andalusia had multiple runners on base in the second and fourth innings. The Tigers put good scoring opportunities together in the second and third, but both couldn’t convert behind their team’s pitching and strong infield play.

The Bulldogs (15-4) pushed three runs across in the fifth inning on Zach Ward’s RBI ground out, and an error at right off of a hit by catcher Justin Scherzinger, who then was caught at third base on the force.

The Tigers cut the game to 4-3 in the bottom half of the fifth when George scored on a passed ball and Johnny Owens hit in Brennan Head on a ground out to Q. Maddox.

For the final two innings, Scherzinger came in and allowed no runs, one hit and struck out one to get the save.

Rasberry said Scherzinger asked to pitch the last two innings.

“When a kid wants a baseball, that’s good to see,” he said. “I thought he came in and did what he was supposed to do.”

Behind Scherzinger, Andalusia strung together two errors to keep the Tigers in the game late.

However, Graham made a heads up play as catcher behind first base on an overthrow. Ross connected with the short stop for the force out at second base as the runner tried after reaching on the error.

“That’s an effort play,” Rasberry said. “(Graham’s) effort right there got rewarded.”

Smith went 2-for-3 with an RBI to lead AHS. Ward had an RBI on a 0-for-4 performance; Daniel Henderson and Jud Rogers had one double each.

George and Short led SHS and went 2-for-3. Owens and Short added an RBI each.

Rollin Kinsaul got the loss for the Tigers. He pitched 2.2 innings and allowed three runs on three hits and struck out one.

Lawless got the no decision.

Game 1

Andalusia 3, Straughn 0

The Bulldogs scored two runs in the first inning and one in the fourth in the first-game victory.

After Graham had his outing, Henderson came in in relief for 3.1 innings. Henderson allowed two hits and no runs in the no decision.

Grayson Campbell pitched the final two outs of the game, striking out one for the save.

Graham, Henderson and Campbell combined for a four-hitter against SHS.

In the top of the first and with two outs, AHS tacked its two runs by an RBI double from Smith and an RBI single from Scherzinger.

Henderson pitch hit for Graham in the fourth and later scored on Hunter Earnest’s double to left.

Rasberry said his team did a great job with taking an early lead in both games, but needs to follow through on maintaining their focus out on the field.

“Right now, we’re sitting in a little lull with that,” the Andalusia coach said. “We’re not going to beat a playoff team like that.

“We’re turning around to just sit on stuff like that and wait for things to happen,” he said. “You can’t do that in ball games.”

SHS couldn’t get anything going in the fifth and sixth innings, but threatened in the seventh with two runners on and one out.

Henderson then struck out the next batter swinging and forced a ground out at short stop for the final out of the first game.

Owens, Kinsaul, Taylor Messick and Lawless had one hit each for the Tigers.

Smith went 2-for-2 with one RBI; and Q. Maddox went 2-for-3 with one RBI to lead Andalusia.

Andalusia travels to Troy to play in the Best of the Best Tournament on Friday. The Bulldogs face Charles Henderson at 4 p.m., and then UMS-Wright in the night cap at 6.

Straughn hosts Southside Selma on Friday for a doubleheader, starting at 5 p.m.

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