Troy wins tourney, Pike splits with Dothan

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 12, 2002

Sports Editor

Troy Post 70 handed Morton, Miss., a 12-6 loss, capturing the championship trophy at the Prattville American Legion Tournament over the weekend.

However, Troy may have lost its top pitcher. According to head coach Russ Jinright, Justin Sims, who pitched a five-inning shutout against Northwest Mississippi this weekend, strained his throwing arm and Troy State athletic trainers have recommended that he not throw a baseball for the rest of the summer.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

"He can still bat and probably play first base," said Jinright.

Jinright said the loss of the lefthander hurts the team and means that more of his players will probably see time in the rotation. Matthew Johnson, Josh Sexton and Clint Pugh all saw time on the mound during the Prattville Tournament. Johnson worked a seven-inning 6-4 decision in the first game against Morton while Pugh picked up the win in the finals. Sexton allowed six hits in Troy’s only loss; a 5-4 decision to Valley in the second game.

While pitching is still somewhat of a concern for Jinright, he couldn’t be more pleased with his team’s hitting performance so far this season. Post 70 is 10-2 and a large part of that success is due to the team’s overall batting average. Seven players are batting .300 or above. Pugh is tops with .529, followed by Blake Phelps (.455), Chase Kelly (.452), Sims (.436), Daniel Porter (.417), Brett Pierce (.386) and Tyson Pugh (.378).

Clint Pugh contributed two singles and a home run in Post 70’s opening 6-4 win over Morton. Kelly had two doubles and Tyson Pugh went 3-for-3 at the plate. Chase Clower chipped in two singles as Post 70 scored two runs in the seventh to break a 4-4 deadlock.

In the second game, Valley opened with four runs in the first and held off a late Troy rally to win 5-4.

Post 70 tied the game at four runs apiece in the sixth as Clint Pugh led off with a double and Sims, Kelly and Porter all followed with basehits. Valley went ahead by one run in the top of the seventh on a single RBI. Clower was walked to start the bottom half of the seventh and moved into scoring position on a sacrifice hit by Jake Kitchens. Pugh and Pierce was retired at the plate to end the game.

Against Northwest Mississippi, Sims struck out eight batters and allowed two hits as Troy coasted to an easy 12-0 win. Kelly finished the game with a grandslam home run in the fifth, sending home Pierce, Clint Pugh and Phelps who had reached on singles.

The final game saw Troy outdistance Morton in the fifth and sixth innings of play, scoring 10 runs to win the ball game 12-6. Clint Pugh led off the sixth with a home run. Pierce was 3-for-4, batting fifth instead of his usual lead-off spot in the order. Sims and Kelly each had two hits. Tyson Pugh, David Doty and Porter also added hits.

Post 70 will host its second annual Summer Classic this weekend with teams from G.W. Long, Prattville, Northview, Montgomery, Wetumpka, Brewton, and Albany, Ga., all participating. Games will be played at both Troy State’s Riddle-Pace Field and Charles Henderson’s Hogan’s Hole. The tournament features two divisions. Troy will play G.W. Long in its first game on Friday at CHHS. Game time is 4 p.m.

Pike Liberal Arts 8 – 13

Dothan 10 – 2

Pike split a pair of games with Dothan on Saturday, dropping the first contest 10-8, but bouncing back to win the second 13-2.

Dale Garrett earned the win on the mound for Pike in the second contest, striking out seven batters. Luke Sanders had a triple and a single and Drew Kilpatrick added a home run and a double as Pike broke open a 2-2 tie with four runs in the second inning. Wesley Grant was 3-for-3 also for Pike.

Josh Prichard and Chris Bradford had doubles for Dothan.

Brandon Hooks pitched the first game for Pike with Jarrett Maddox taking the 10-8 win for Dothan. Dothan got four runs off four hits by Brandon Armor, Trent Smith, Josh West and Scott Owens in the seventh inning to edge Pike for the victory.

Hooks had a triple and Brandon Arnold had a single. Sanders and Kilpatrick was 3-for-5.

The Pike Lib American Legion team plays today in Brundidge at 5 p.m.