BATTLE OF THE BULLDOGS: Big offensive surge lifts Andy over Clarke County

Published 12:05 am Saturday, March 23, 2019

The Andalusia Bulldogs moved closer to clinching the area crown with an 11-3 win over the Clarke County Bulldogs on Friday night in Andalusia.

Clarke County got things going with a leadoff base hit and then an error on the same play allowed the runner to move around to third.

Jacob Cravey got the next batter to pop out to the mound before giving up a walk and a hit batter to load the bases.

Cravey worked himself out of a tight spot by getting 1-2-3 double play to end the frame.

Andalusia’s first base runner came with two outs in the bottom of the first inning when Hogan Nichols drew a walk.

Andalusia was unable to move Nichols beyond second base.

In the top of the second inning, Cravey struck out the first batter of the frame before giving up an infield hit.

Cravey battled back with a strikeout and a fly ball to Caleb Blackston in center field end the frame.

Garrett Davis reached off of a hit by pitch to start the top of the second inning.

Davis moved around to third off of an error off of the bat of Noah Kelley.

With Blackston at the plate, the Bulldogs called for a hit and run.

Blackston ripped a line drive back up the middle of the diamond, but the Clarke County pitcher was able to snag the ball and fire to first for a double play.

In the top of the third inning, Clarke County picked up leadoff single and then a one-out error put the visiting Bulldogs in business.

Clarke County then used a single and a sacrifice bunt to take a 2-0 lead.

Ayden Amis got things started for the Bulldogs with a leadoff single to start the bottom of the third inning.

Gill Morgan followed with a scorching shot to shortstop that the Clarke County player mishandled to get things going for Andalusia.

Cravey helped his own cause when he laced a double into the gap in right center to leave Andalusia trailing 2-1.

Andalusia tied the game when Nichols drove in G. Morgan with a sacrifice fly ball to center field.

Chip Morgan followed with a single and then Davis drew a walk to keep things going for Andalusia.

J.W. Jones then put Andalusia on top when he drove in Cravey with a sacrifice fly.

Clarke County got a perfect bunt to start the top of the fourth.

The play turned out to be big for the visiting Bulldogs as they were able to bring around the runner to tie the game.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, Blackston got the frame started with a single.

Blackston took off for second on a hit and run play, and Amis ripped the ball into the space that would have been occupied by the Clarke County shortstop.

Andalusia then loaded up the bases with a single from G. Morgan.

Blackston then gave the Bulldogs the lead when he scored on a wild pitch to put Andalusia up 4-3.

Andalusia continued to add to their lead with another sacrifice fly from Nichols to bring Amis in to score.

The bats stayed hot for the host Bulldogs as C. Morgan drove in a run with a single.

Davis then drew his third free pass of the day after being hit by a pitch.

Andalusia loaded up the bases again with a single from Jones and then Kelley drove in a pair of runs with a single to put Andalusia on top 8-3 after four innings of play.

Jones took over on the mound for the Bulldogs in the top of the sixth inning.

After walking the first batter, Jones settled in and retired the next three batters.

Cravey got things going in the bottom of the sixth inning with a single.

Andalusia then loaded the bases when Nichols drew a walk and C. Morgan was hit by a pitch.

Kelley then drew a two-out walk to push Cravey around to score.

Blackston followed with an infield single that scored a run.

Andalusia’s final run of the day came when Amis drew a bases loaded walk.

In the top of the seventh inning, Jones got a fly ball to center for the first out of the inning.

Clarke County then got a scorching line drive to center field that looked like it was going to get down and possibly bring the runner on first around to score.

Blackston wasn’t going to let that happen as he went into a Superman dive for the second out of the inning.

Jones then struck out the final batter to end the game.

“We’ve gone down 2-0 to these guys the past two games with these guys,” Andalusia head coach Tyler Dent said. “We can’t let up because of the type of players they are, the type of athletes they are and they way they are coached. I’m proud of the way we hit the ball the past two days. Obviously, Cravey didn’t have his best stuff, but we picked him up in the dugout and we picked him up defensively. Like that catch that Blackston makes in the seventh inning up 11-3. That’s what kind of player he is. I’m proud of what we did at the plate. Good approaches at the plate and that’s what we’ve got to do against these guys. If someone is failing or not doing their job, we have to pick them up somewhere else.”