SAND ROCK – It wasn’t the way Cole Murphy wanted to win his first Cherokee County Baseball Tournament title, but Mother Nature had other ideas.
After Spring Garden starting pitcher Landon Gowens walked Cherokee County’s No. 9 hitter Caleb Edmondson in the top of the sixth inning, the umpires called both teams off the field because of rain, but they never returned to play. The game was called after 15 minutes, with Spring Garden earning an 8-2 decision.
It was the Panthers’ third straight Cherokee County championship.
“It’s real special,” Murphy said. “We didn’t get to play any this whole week, and I was a little nervous about us not getting a game in, but I told them ‘Guys, look. We don’t have any games. We’re going to practice.’ We had some good practices. When we came up here, I told them to stay focused, that we’re up here for one reason, to continue winning and show everybody who we are. That’s what our kids come out here and did. ivermectina ampolla dosis en humanos They played well. They did what they were supposed to do.
“The way it ended wasn’t the way I wanted it to end, but it is what it is. We still got the win and it still feels good.”
Cam Welsh provided the Panthers with the game’s two biggest hits. He delivered a two-run triple to right center in the bottom of the third inning to give Spring Garden a 3-0 lead. An inning later, he had beat out a play at first for an infield single that scored two more runs – part of a five-run fourth that broke the game open at 8-1. horse ivermectin for humans
Earlier in the day, Welsh belted a three-run triple in the bottom of the fifth to help the Panthers sink Cedar Bluff 12-2. He also walked with the bases loaded and scored a run on a passed ball.
“I really feel like it was all about staying loose getting up there,” Welsh said. “I’ve been working on that, just staying loose, thinking of my training and trusting in that. It comes up big in big moments like that. The guys were picking me up and hyping me up. It makes a big difference.”
Murphy said Welsh has been hitting the ball well of late.
“These two games (in the county tournament) have really opened up for him,” Murphy said. “He stayed in there and waited on the ball to travel. He made solid contact with it in both the Cedar Bluff and Cherokee County games. It was big for us. I’m proud of him.”
Speaking of big, Gowens also delivered on the mound for the Panthers. Although he walked nine batters, he surrendered just three hits and struck out six.
“It took me a couple of innings to get where I needed to be, but I eventually started hitting my spots,” Gowens said. “He (the umpire) didn’t like the outside corner, so I had to put it inside and over the plate and work with what I had. I knew my team needed me, so I had to come through and do it.”
“Landon finally found his rhythm. That’s why it’s hard to take him off the mound,” Murphy said. “He’s got a good rhythm, a good pace. He was hitting his spots. He works amazingly. We just stayed with him on the mound and it helped us out in the end to get the win tonight.”
Gowens got out of several jams thanks to his defense and the Warriors’ over-aggressiveness.
“We had guys on base every single inning. There was not an inning we did not put pressure on them,” Cherokee County coach Will Smith said. “Obviously we had some mental errors, missed a few signs here and there that cost us a run or two that may have changed the outcome of the game, but I like how we competed.
“We had one bad inning (in the fourth). We got two outs on five pitches, and three runs later, they busted the game open. I’d like to know what would’ve happened if we’d have executed how we normally do. We live by our aggression and we die by our aggression. It came back to get us tonight and that’s part of the game.”
Haden Wheeler led the Warriors at the plate with a RBI-single in fifth and a pair of walks. Jeb Crane and Tristan Whitefield also collected a hit apiece.
Connor Wilson suffered the loss after working three innings. He gave up three runs on two hits with three walks and four strikeouts.
Reese Winstead had a hit and walked twice for the Panthers. Andrew Bates and Gavin Bass both added a hit apiece. Bates also drove in a run. Chaz Pope walked twice.
Against Cedar Bluff earlier on Friday, Bates had four hits and drove in four runs. para que sirve simpiox Pope was hit by three pitches and walked.
“I have a solid group of kids and subs I’m comfortable putting into any game because they’re ready. They compete the whole time,” Murphy said. “Every little opportunity they have they’re going to try and take advantage of it. I’m lucky and blessed to take over a program like that. It’s really been easier on me being a first-year head coach with kids like that and that type of mindset. It’s made it as least stressful as possible.”