AAA team hungry for state

Published 3:00 am Wednesday, July 12, 2017

After a long wait, the Troy AAA team will play Thursday in front of their hometown fans as they open state tournament play.

After getting a bye through the district tournament, Troy played in a warm up tournament in Montgomery over the weekend.

“We are feeling pretty good,” said manager Adam Brookins. “We were able to knock a little rust off so that was good for us. We went from being the team that hasn’t played anybody to the team that has played the most recently. It was the last little bit of time we could use to teach these boys about stuff.”

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Troy begins their journey to a potential state championship on their field.

“That is something they have never had the luxury of doing,” Brookins said. “We have always had to travel and play in front of other team’s home crowd. It’s nice to finally be here in Troy and I know a lot of people will come out and support us.”

And, because many of the other teams have finished district and are preparing for other state tournaments, the AAA team will enjoy the support of other players.

“These kids love it when the older boys come and watch them,” Brookins said. “That excites them. It’s going to be a fun experience for them and I think us playing in Troy should help us out.”

Throughout their four games in the warm up tournament, Troy played well on defense.

“We are pretty sound in the infield,” Brookins said. “We have a lot of speed in the outfield and we have really good infielders that don’t mind getting in front of the baseball.”

Wes Braisted will get the start for Troy and will be joined in the rotation by Kade Brookins, Cole Pugh and Luke Barron.

“We were able to put them in live situations this weekend to see who pitched the best,” Brookins said. “(Braisted) and Kade Brookins are probably the two hardest throwers we have and Cole Pugh and Luke Barron are two accurate pitchers.”

The coaches have tinkered with their lineup all summer long and that will continue on Thursday.

“The lineup that we start on Thursday is going to be different than what we played with the last several weeks,” Brookins said.

Only one player on the team has yet to win a state championship, so Brookins said the coaches hold the players to a higher standard.

“They know what they have to do and come Thursday I feel like they will be ready to get back to work and win some ball games,” Brookins said.

Troy plays at 7 p.m. today against Alexandria on field 3 at the Sportsplex.