Fort Dale#039;s playoff hopes still alive

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Fort Dale Academy's baseball team now holds a half-game lead over Morgan Academy in Class AAA, Area 2 West after splitting with the Senators on Friday.

Morgan held off the Eagles 12-6 in Game 1, but Fort Dale bounced back to shut out the Senators in the nightcap.

Chuck Barrett was 2-for-3 with a solo home run in Game 1 and was 2-for-4 in Game 2. In fact during the Eagles last three games, Barrett accounted for five RBIs.

Adam Moore pitched a complete game six-hit shutout

in the Eagles' 3-0 victory.

Fort Dale could have clinched a playoff spot for the first time since 2000 with a win Tuesday afternoon when the Eagles were host to Morgan, but results from the game were not available by presstime.

Fort Dale (11-5) has three more area games left before closing out the regular season, but Eagles second baseman Eric Hicks said he and his teammates aren't looking that far ahead.

"We just want to take it one game at a time," Hicks said. "That's all we can play is one game, so we don't look that far ahead."

So far the Eagles have assured themselves their first winning season since 2000, but Fort Dale coach Clint Lowery said his team expect s more than just winning.

"I don't think our kids will be happy unless they advance to the (state semifinals)," Lowery said. "That's good and that's why we are so good this year."

The high expectations by the team stems from the fact a majority of the starting players returned from last year, said Hicks.

"We have learned to play well as a team, and we have put a lot of time and effort in," he said. "So we expect more."

The Eagles also have been a Jekyll and Hyde team from time to time. In the two games Fort Dale lost on Friday and Saturday, the Eagles committed 10 errors.

"We don't make errors like that if we are focused and in the game," Lowery said. "Our strength last year is that we didn't make many errors, but that's not the case this year. In games that we win, we play well in all seven innings. But errors eat us up when we lose."