HEAD START: The Troy Ozone Rookies start the State Tournament with a 22-5 win against Decatur
Published 3:00 am Friday, July 10, 2015
The Troy Ozone Rookies got their State Tournament off to a roaring start Thursday afternoon, routing the Decatur-Nationals 22-5 in the opening round of the state tournament in Oxford.
“We started slow tonight. We had some trouble finding the strike zone,” head coach Chris Huner said. “We made some adjustments and really hit the ball well the last few innings. I told them to be a little more patient and told our pitchers to throw a little more strikes.”
After falling behind in the first couple of innings, Troy battled back and scored seven runs in the third inning, and 13 runs in the fourth.
Trailing 5-2 entering the third inning Troy got things going with base hit by Coby Johnson. After Johnson stole third base Noah Prestwood brought him home on a base hit, to shrink Troy’s deficit to 5-3.
With Prestwood on third base and Brady Huner at second, Quay Rodgers hit a sacrifice fly to center field that scored Prestwood.
Troy then got some breaks from Decatur, Skylar Kidd singled, and walks by Adrian Caldwell and Jeff Warrick loaded the bases.
After a passed ball, Kidd was able to score another run for Troy.
Brady Barron scored Warrick on a base hit, followed by JD Wilson reaching base due to an error, scoring the seventh run of the inning.
The Troy pitching staff after the first couple of innings shut down Decatur and held the Nationals to a total of six hits.
“JD Wilson came in and threw the ball really well the final two and two-thirds innings for us,” Huner said. “He only let up a couple hits and didn’t walk a batter.”
The Decatur Nationals committed seven errors Thursday afternoon, and Troy was able to capitalize where it counted.
“We took advantage when we got base runners on,” Huner said. “We stole a lot of bases, and we were able to move some runners up when they threw over.”
In the fourth inning Troy hit the gas scoring 13 runs off of six hits. Decatur committed four errors in the inning while walking four.
There were a few big hits in the inning that made the Nationals pay for their mistakes.
With Matt Dubose and Johnson on base, Prestwood smacked a double that scored Dubose from third base. Huner was able to drive in Johnson when he grounded out to first base. KenCorius Boykin singled in the inning driving in Kidd, and Caldwell who scored on an error by the second basemen.
Wilson and Johnson closed out the inning with singles, Barron scored on the single by Johnson.
Prestwood, Rodgers, Boykin, and Barron all finished the game with two hits for Troy. Johnson led the way however, racking up four hits.
Prestwood led the way in RBI’s for Troy finishing with four.
With the win the Ozone Rookies advance into the winners bracket and will face the winner of Piedmont and East Tuscaloosa at 8 p.m. today.