Troy 8U cleaning up mistakes

Published 9:39 pm Monday, June 25, 2018

The Troy 8U coach-pitch team will use Saturday’s runner-up finish as fuel as they get ready for next month’s state tournament in Dothan.

Troy and Enterprise split the first two games of the best-of-three series on Friday evening. Enterprise narrowly escaped game three with a 4-2 win.

The second-place finish will put Enterprise and Troy on other sides of the upcoming state bracket. Enterprise will join host Dothan on the first-place side of the bracket.

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“We have to correct the minor details,” said head coach Andrew Davis. “It’s what pretty much cost us this weekend. We played good defense for two games and one game was an offensive explosion by both teams. The third game it was tit for tat. Whoever made the error was going to come out on the losing end.”

Power played a big role in the first two games of the series. Enterprise hit two home runs in as many games to begin the tournament. Troy focused on hitting line drives.

“Normally you don’t see that,” Davis said. “We have some guys that have the potential, but usually we hit more line drives than anything. We like to run the bases, and with the shorter fence, it sort of hinders us running the bases like we normally do.”

Aside from game two, where both teams combined to score 36 runs, the series was a tight one between Troy and Enterprise. The tight, low-scoring games made defense more prevalent.

“One was 7-6 and one was 4-2,” Davis said. “What I push more than anything is defense, defense, defense. I want us to execute the best we can. In that third game, we had a few errors in the fifth inning and we just couldn’t make up for it. That’s what cost us. At this age, you can overlook defense, but that can win you some ball games if you can go out and execute.”

Davis and the coaching staff learned a lot about the team over the course of three games. The biggest thing was the squad’s determination to stay in the game.

“They fight and never give up,” Davis said. “In the second game, they took the lead on us, but we came right back and took the lead. It went back and forth for several innings. We are always in a ball game. I have seen a team score 20 runs in an inning.”

Troy will have just over a week to get ready for Dothan. In that time, Davis wants to work on hitting and the team’s timing.

“We are going to hit some more and try and get the timing down,” Davis said “We are going to tweak some things that I have seen on defense. (There) are some things that we can try to correct.”