Aggies come calling today at ‘Hogan’s Hole’

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 26, 2000

Sports Editor

It’s do-or-die time tomorrow at 2:30 p.m. and the Charles Henderson High School Trojans should be primed and ready.

It’s the first game of the 2000 AHSAA Class 5A State Playoffs and it has been 10 years since the city of Troy could say they were hosting.

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The opponents, Jackson High School (14-7) will make a three-hour trip from Southwest Alabama early tomorrow morning and after all is said and done one team will move on and the other will be ready to schedule their awards banquet.

There weren’t a lot of teams on the two teams’ schedules that CHHS head coach Steve Garrett and his crew could compare numbers with. Jackson played a number of the smaller schools in their area and never really faced off against the ranked and upper level opponents the Trojans were playing all year long.

That schedule, that might have been scary at first, has molded his group of Trojans into a well-oiled machine and now Garrett feels that the playoffs won’t throw them any curves.

"I don’t think that any pitching or anything like that is really going to amaze us that much," Garrett said. "Not that there isn’t someone out there that could come in and shut us down because they could. I just think that if we play real good defense like we have been that we’ve got a definite chance to win."

As far as Jackson goes, Garrett and his team expects a scrappy bunch of Aggies that depend on their bats to win most of their games.

"They’ve got a pretty good hitting ball club, but they don’t have any super pitcher that’s over powering from what I understand," Garrett said. "We’re probably going to face their right-handed pitcher that throws in the low-to-mid 80’s. Has a curve ball and a change-up. What we are hoping is that he will be average compared to a lot of pitchers we have seen."

CHHS will start with junior Kevin Stephens, but hopes that he won’t have to go the distance.

"We’re going with what we think gives us a good chance to win," the coach continued. "The best thing in the world that could happen is for us to possibly jump out on top of them and end up saving Stephens for later. We can’t think about it that way though. We’ve just got to worry about tomorrow first."

Garrett says that his team has some butterflies, but feels that is normal. He feels good about the Trojans’ chances, but also knows that in the game of baseball anything can happen.

"This team is a lot more confident than they were last year," Garrett said. "I believe this team goes out every game expecting to win."

Charles Henderson comes in on an eight-game winning streak and holds a 24-8 record, the most wins ever at the high school in a regular season.

Jackson came in second to Citronelle in Area 2 and the winner of the matchup will face off against the winner of the B.C. Rain-Chelsea game on Saturday. Charles Henderson could possibly host that second round game if they beat Jackson and B.C. Rain defends its home field against Chelsea. If Chelsea and CHHS wins then the game will be held in Chelsea.