Troy Ozone looking to remain focused before state

Published 6:18 pm Wednesday, July 3, 2019

The Troy Ozone tournament team was one of two teams from Troy to not participate in a district tournament. Like the Junior Dixie Boys, The Troy Ozone team will see its first full action at the Ozone State Tournament beginning on July 12 in Troy.

“It’s pretty boring right now,” said head coach Adam Brookins. “We played in a travel ball tournament to try and get some reps and we scrimmaged Zion Chapel. We are trying to do some live stuff at practice to break up the everyday grind of things.”

During losing games in the travel ball tournament, Brookins was able to get a good look at his players.

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“There were a few good teams in Marianna,” Brookins said. “We lost a few games, but we were in every game we played. That was a positive because you get a good look at what your pitchers do in pressure situations. When we had to have hits in the tournament we got them and we were able to score runs.”

The scrimmage against Zion Chapel provided an opportunity for the offense to get some work in.

“It was good for us to play someone like them to get some hits and take a break from practicing one night,” Brookins said.

The fear of not playing many games leading to the tournament is keeping focus. The hope is that the games they did play will help them remained focused leading up to the tournament where every game matters.

“Practice is probably everybody’s least favorite thing to do,” Brookins said. “You have to do different things every day so they won’t be tired of coming to practice every day and doing the same thing.”

Brookins has changed the theme to each practice. One day Troy may work on pickoffs and the next day they may work on base stealing.

“Switch it up to give them a different look,” Brookins said. “It’s a grind and it’s a struggle teaching them new things every practice. If they can stay locked in and look at the big picture I think they will be OK.”

Up and down the lineup, Troy should produce.

“Even our 12th man can hit a home run,” Brookins said. “It’s nice to have power at the bottom of our lineup. I think we are a very fast team that is athletic.”

The pitching staff will feature six arms.

“I have six that can go out and throw, but everyone else has pitched at some point of time during the regular season,” Brookins said. “I think we have a good fielding team and we can pitch.”

Troy has a roster full of players that is used to the bright lights that stat tournaments offer and even though they didn’t play in the district tournament, Brookins is believes his team will be ready to go.

“I don’t think it will be anything new for these guys,” Brookins said. “They are looking forward to the tournament starting.”

Along with Brookins, Troy is coached by Dax Pugh and Steve Barron. Players include Rhodes Baker, Luke Barron, Jackson Booth, Dawson Bradford, Wes Braisted, Kade Brookins, Wilson Cotton, Kaneil Lewis, Jordan McBryde, Tyler McLendon, Cole Pugh and Pruitt Vaughn.