Weekend warriors

Published 10:14 pm Monday, March 15, 2010

It was a good weekend to be a Patriot.

The annual Jonah McWaters Invitational Tournament saw both the home teams win the championship for the first time ever as the Pike Liberal Arts softball and baseball teams defended their home turf.

Both varsity squads were a perfect 3-0 in their respective tournaments.

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In the three games the baseball team played, it outscored its opponents (South Montgomery County Academy, Crenshaw Christian Academy and Coosa Valley Academy) 53-8 and won all its games in five innings, thanks to the 10-run rule.

“Overall, I am proud of how these guys played this weekend – we hit the ball really well and did what we needed to do to win,” head coach Butch Austin said.

In all, there were eight home runs hit by the Patriots, Sam Carroll, Ross Hixon and Blake Floyd each had two a piece, while Trey Walters and Logan Stewart each hit one.

The sophomore Floyd led the team with nine RBIs.

Both Carroll and Hixon pitched complete games, while Justin McLaughlin, who made his pitching debut after coming off a shoulder injured, pitched three innings.

The three starters combined for 24 strikeouts – in 13 innings.

Carroll was named the tournament MVP, while McLaughlin, Walters Floyd and Hixon were all named to the All-Tournament team.

Across the way, the softball team was experiencing the same kind of success, as the girls beat South Montgomery County Academy and Prattville Christian twice. Shelby Broadway got two wins on the mound for the Patriots, and was also named tournament MVP, while Kaylee Taylor got the championship-clinching win over Prattville Christian on Saturday night.

Sarah Richburg and Brandi Henderson were also named to the All-Tournament team.

“This win means a lot to us,” head coach Mendy Avant said after the win. “This team is really coming together right now, and hopefully, that is something that will continue to happen as the season goes a long.”