Fort Dale scatters 11 hits, including two home runs in victory over Escambia

Published 12:00 am Thursday, March 9, 2006

Fort Dale Academy coach Clint Lowery said last week that he wanted each game to be a momentum builder.

He certainly got what he asked for from his Eagle team by notching a 6-1 win over Escambia Academy in their season-opener Monday at Beeland Park.

Fort Dale's sophomore pitcher Casey Weston allowed just two hits, while striking out 11 to pick up the win on the mound. He also helped his own cause at the plate going 3-for-3 with a double, a solo home run and two RBI.

&#8220We hit the ball well and other than a couple of little things, I think we did pretty good,” Lowery said. &#8220We have a couple guys who are new to some positions, and I was certainly pleased with their effort.”

While Weston's pitching statistics seem impressive, he did show signs of fatigue in the sixth inning when Escambia Academy (1-3) loaded the bases with one out trailing 5-1.

Weston managed to regain his control to record his tenth strikeout for out number two, and then had another Cougar fly out to left field to stave off any comeback attempt.

&#8220Right there is where I thought we had a good chance of getting back into the ballgame,” Escambia Academy coach Mitchell Hughes said. &#8220We had the opportunities, but you have to give Fort Dale a lot of credit. Their pitcher did a good job, and I'm not disappointed at all in what our guys did. They played hard against a good ballclub.”

The Eagles (1-0) jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning when Weston drove home Andrew Phelps with a RBI double.

Fort Dale then tacked on two more runs from Will Bowman and Blake Mullins in the second inning before Weston crushed a Tyler Brown pitch over the left centerfield fence for a solo home run to give the Eagles a 4-0 cushion.

Brown finished the game giving up 11 hits, while striking out eight.

Mullins scored another run in the fourth inning before Escambia finally scratched the scoreboard.

John Brantley scored the Cougars' only run after reaching on a double and later scoring on a fielder's choice.

Phelps, who was 2-for-4 on the day, answered Escambia's run with a solo bomb to center to seemingly put the game away for Weston.

and the Eagles.

Brady Newton and Mullins also had two hits each for Fort Dale, which returns to action at Cottage Hill on Friday before Saturday's afternoon matchup with Faith Academy.