Errors cost Greenville in Dixie Youth final

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 16, 2005

Greenville had everything on its side heading into the deciding Dixie Youth district championship game, but Murphy's Law.

The Greenville All-Stars were victim to eight errors and a handful of mental errors to fall 20-4 to Troy National for the right to play in the state tournament in Dothan.

Troy jumped out to a 12-0 lead after sending 18 batters to the plate in the top of the first inning. Greenville committed half of its total errors in that inning alone.

"You can't make that many mistakes and expect to win," said Greenville manager Ken Burkett. "They also out hit us tonight. I think we started to back-peddle after they put those 12 runs up there in the first."

Troy jumped out to a 2-0 lead on back-to-back extra-base hits. Then the mental errors kicked in for Greenville.

A misplay on a routine grounder kept the momentum going for Troy. Greenville then gave up a walk and a routine fly ball to center field was dropped.

Greenville managed to pick up its first out with the bases loaded trailing 2-0, but then the big blow came from the next batter.

Tre Bryant crushed a Nathan Branum pitch that easily went over the center-field fence sign of 190 feet for a grand slam home run to give Troy a 6-0 lead.

Troy National added six more runs on four hits and two errors.

You could tell that Murphy's Law was unmerciful on Greenville when a simple pop up to second baseman Stuart Matthews just fell out of his glove onto the ground.

Greenville managed to cut into Troy's lead in the bottom half of the inning.

Matthews led off with a single past Troy second baseman Michael Benton. Then Ryan Smith reached on a Troy error. Greenville then loaded the bases when Todd Burkett slapped a single beyond the reach of Troy shortstop Jayden Barnes.

With the bases loaded, Branum had a chance to help his own cause. He ripped a single down the first-base line to score Matthews and Smith. But two base-running errors stalled Greenville's attempt for a comeback.

Troy responded by adding four runs in the top of the second inning.

Benton led off with a first-pitch home run over the fence in the gap in left-center field. Then Troy National added three more runs on two hits and one Greenville error.

Troy then put the game away in the third inning by scoring four runs on three hits and two more Greenville errors.

Greenville scattered six hits, while Troy had 13.