Troy American wins two over weekend
District host-team will play in title game
By Kevin Pearcey
"Tough on everybody."
That’s how Troy Minor American head coach Robert Hawkins described his teams Saturday night contest against the Troy National squad, coached by Ronald Wade.
Troy American won the game 5-3, handing the Troy National’s their first loss in district competition.
Hawkins said it was difficult to play a team when everybody on the opposing side were your friends and whose children had played together during the regular league season.
"The emotions already run high in a ball game when you’re playing a team that you’re not familiar with," he said. "But then when you look across the field and see people that you work with and who you, and your kid’s know personally, then that’s four times the pressure."
Troy American received the bye for Tuesday and will await the winner of the Dothan National-Troy National game for the district championship on Wednesday.
It could be Troy vs. Troy again for all the marbles, which would mean even more pressure on the families, coaches and the players.
But Hawkins said everything will be fine as long as the parents and the children "left the game on the field" and didn’t take it outside into work and the schools.
Hawkins said that should his team play the Troy National team in the title game – however stressful it may be – that in itself was another example of the quality and talent that Troy possesses in the sport of baseball.
"To have two teams from the same city meet in the championship game is just a testament to the hard work of both teams involved," he said.
Troy American 11
The Troy American team took their second win of the tournament with an 11-8 victory over the Ozark All-Stars on Friday.
Ozark took the lead late in the game, but Troy had a big sixth inning at the plate to seal the victory.
Ryan Williamson had a lead off single to open the sixth for Troy. Rickey Goodwin was walked next and then Sam Jones followed his teammate with a single. Clifton Brady doubled next to score two runs and Andrew Mills singled to send a few more runners home and give Troy their final margin of victory.
Aaron Allen opened the game for Troy with a two run homer and also had a two run double in the third inning of play.
Rickey Goodwin was starting pitcher for Troy and Ryan Williamson closed the game on the mound.
Troy National 12
Runs were plentiful in the National team’s 12-5 victory over Dothan late Friday night.
William Teal had a triple in the first inning to lead off the batting order for Troy. Teal scored as did Steve Kyle, who was walked. Casey Weston drove in both runners with a double. David Williams and Dustin Smith reached base, also on walks, and both ended up scoring in the first to give Troy a 5-0 lead.
Alex Fuller got on first base with a single for Dothan and also scored his team’s only run in the first inning. Dothan scored two more runs in the second to cut even further into the National team’s lead. Troy went three and out their half of the second.
Kyle got Troy back on track with a single in the third inning as Troy scored three more runs to increase their lead, finally able to pull away from Dothan.
Russell Osborne, Alex Adams, Jake Smith and Brandon Bundy all scored runs in the sixth inning to round out the scoring for Troy.
Troy American 5
Troy National 3
Saturday’s game between both minor tournament teams for Troy was a close contest that was probably decided on the pitching arm of Troy American’s Clifton Brady.
Brady allowed two runs in the first inning, but struck out seven of the next nine Troy National batters he faced. Brady had ten strike outs in the game to just one walk.
"It was just a well-played and close ball game," said Troy American coach Robert Hawkins. "We had a few balls that rolled our way and made a few less errors. Both teams played extremely good."
William Teal and Casey Weston scored two runs in the first to give the National team the lead, but Troy American’s Douglas Hawkins and Aaron Allen combined for singles in the second inning and Marese Thomas doubled to send both runners home.
In the fourth inning, Troy American’s Sam Jones reached base on an error and Allen was walked. Brady also reached base on an error and Drew Mills delivered a hit into left field which drove in all three runners.
Steve Kyle scored Troy National’s only other run in the fifth inning.