Putting on a showPublished 12:02am Friday, March 14, 2014
Andalusia put on another show again Thursday night as the Bulldogs swept rival Straughn 6-1, 3-2 in a doubleheader at Tigers’ Field.
After taking care of business in game one, the Bulldogs were in a tight spot during the night cap.
Trailing 1-0 going into the top of the sixth inning, AHS coach Tyler Dent pinch hit Grayson Campbell for Brayden Burkhardt with two on and two out.
That call paid off in the end as Campbell launched a three-run home run over the left field fence to give the Bulldogs a 3-1 advantage.
Throughout the second game, Straughn’s Taylor Messick was throwing a gem of a game until he was pulled three batters prior to Campbell.
“He had a good breaking ball,” Dent said about Messick. “He kept us off balance to start with. We were a little undisciplined at the plate. I think our guys made a good adjustment. We moved up front in the box and stayed with what we’re trying to do, which is hit the ball on the ground hard and that’s what we did.”
Dent said he knew Campbell was going to come up “big” for the team.
“In big-game situations, he can get the job done,” Dent said. “I had it in my mind the whole time to keep him on the bench and his head in the game, and he did a great job of sitting on the bench for me and coming up in a big-time situation and hitting that ball.”
The Tigers (6-4) weren’t going to back down that easily as they tacked on one run in the bottom of the sixth on a Beau Spivey RBI double that scored Tucker Lawless with two outs.
Andalusia winning-pitcher Quinton Maddox then got Austin Worley to pop up to left to end the inning and a solid performance on the mound from the lefty.
Maddox threw six innings, allowed two hits, one earned run and had nine strikeouts.
Dent said Maddox had a great outing.
“He filled up the zone real well,” Dent said.
Bulldogs closer Justin Scherzinger came in the seventh and led AHS to a three-up, three-down inning to record the save.
Dent said Scherzinger threw well to get the save, which he also got in the first game.
Behind Messick, the Tigers played a good game defensively in both the infield and outfield.
Messick made a nick pick-off in the third, and the infield turned a double play when Andalusia got caught stealing.
With this victory, the Bulldogs improve to 9-6 overall and are riding a four-game win streak after defeating rival Opp earlier this week in a doubleheader.
Before Campbell hit his three-run scorcher in the top of the sixth, Andalusia’s Brandon Smith — who went 4-for-4 in the night cap — singled down the left-field line, and Jud Rogers hit a bunt single to put two on with no outs.
Rogers’ hit came off the arm of Spivey, who came in to relieve Messick.
The Tigers got on board in the second inning thanks to an Andalusia error. Lawless scored on an errant throw from third on a double-play try.
Todd Wright went 1-for-2 with a single; Rogers went 1-for-4; and Maddox went 1-for-4 for AHS.
Straughn’s Lane Sirmon went 1-for-3 with a double; and Spivey went 1-for-3 with a double.
Andalusia 6, Straughn 1 (Game 1)
In his first full outing on the mound, Andalusia’s Hunter Earnest allowed one run on five hits and struck out four in six innings to help lead the Bulldogs to the opening win.
For the day, Earnest tallied 69 pitches and retired the side during his final inning.
Rogers scored on an error in the first to give AHS an early 1-0 lead. In the top of the second, the Bulldogs added three runs as Campbell scored on a force out at first base to start the inning.
Will Harrison later came in on a passed ball and Earnest crossed on a throw.
Spivey then hit an RBI single in the bottom of the second to score Lawless to give the Tigers their only run of the game.
In the third, Campbell scored on an error and Earnest hit an RBI single to score Harrison.
“We came out here and did what we had to do,” Dent said about the first game. “Hunter Earnest, he hadn’t pitched a game all year, well he threw in the first game against Stanhope (Elmore). He came in and threw strikes consistently.”
Earnest went 2-for-3 with two RBIs to lead the Bulldogs.
In the bottom of the first, Harrison kept the Tiger offense in check with two stellar catches in center field.