Motors tops Bank in battle of Carter County ball clubs

By Marvin Birchfield

   The battle between the two county-named teams of the Elizabethton National Little League went to Carter County Motors on Saturday, as Carter County Bank was overdrawn with no deposit left in a 4-0 final.
   After capitalizing off some mistakes, Motors was fine-tuned to capture two runs each in the second and fourth frames.
   "We've been really working on hitting. All these teams are so tough on defense, that you have to hit the ball hard to get anywhere," said Valley Forge Auction coach Phil Nave.
   The Motors were able to elude the Bank's scoring opportunity in the bottom of the first, after having a couple of hits coming from Chase Depew and Isiah Osborne.
   A tough sliding catch from center fielder Chris Pierce produced the final out, and eliminated the chance for the base runners on second and third to come home.
   "They looked like a major league team out here today, I thought," said Nave.
   After a batter was hit and two walks were committed to load the bases, Brandon Burchfield was struck with a pitch to bring in the first run for the Motors.
   A throw to home plate kept the Motors from scoring, when Jake Hodge made the steal and was picked off, but an overthrown ball to third base allowed Stacey Sheffield to come home.
   The Motors led 2-0 heading into the fourth frame, and added another run when an error at second-base brought in Cody Hyder.
   A wild pitch resulted in the Motors' final run.
   The defense for the Motors was stout all game long, as several nice catches came from both the outfield and infield, along with a great pitching effort from Sheffield.
   "He threw a great game," Nave said of Sheffield. "He used his head and mixed it up to keep them off balance, and he's just a 10-year old. But he has done it before, so we have a lot of faith in him."
   Depew collected another hit for the Bankers in the final frame. Motors rose to the occasion defensively, when Derek Mann made contact with the ball and Nolan Childers dove down to make the grab for the final out.
   Valley Forge Auction 13
   Burgie Drug 4
   Valley Forge Auction had the good offense and defense to prescribe Burgie Drug a sound defeat.
   "We've been waiting for the last six or seven games for this to come around, and the last two games we have really hit the baseball," said Valley Forge Auction manager Jerry Hodges.
   A hit from Brent Powell and error at second-base allowed the two runs to score for the Auction in the second frame, with Christopher Dunbar and Garrett Dykes coming home.
   Jerry Berkley smacked a hit to right field to drive in Powell, making it 3-0 in favor of the Auction after two innings of play.
   "The bats just started coming alive for us, and that's what we've been waiting on all year long," said Jerry Hodges.
   An error at shortstop in the top of the third produced the next two scores for the Auction, with Jordan Hodges and Cody Jenkins crossing the plate.
   The Auction led 9-0 heading into the bottom of the fifth, but with the bases loaded Austin Herron was struck by ball for the second time of the contest, which brought home Aaron Vaughn.
   A steal to home by Ryan Thomas produced the next score for Burgie, as they still trailed by five runs heading into the final frame.
   Three runs were scored by the Auction in the final frame as a shot to left field from John Robinson drove in the final run, with Daniel Roberts coming home.
   VFA pitcher Jordan Hodges did a good job by not giving up an earned run until the last inning, when Matt Febuary made an infield hit to score Casey Crapps.
   "He's an 11-year-old pitcher, and he was the only pitcher we had left for the week, so he really stepped up and pulled through for us," said Jerry Hodges.
   Another run was scored by Burgie in the bottom of the last inning with Zack Miller coming home, but the margin was far too great for them to make the comeback.
   6 Sigma 11
   Cash Express 10
   A late-inning rally from 6 Sigma bounced the check book of Cash Express, as Sigma came from five runs down to post an 11-10 victory.
   Cash Express enjoyed a lead of 10-5 heading into the bottom of the fifth, but after several hits and trouble at the mound, Richard Lovelace drove home the final run, with Jake Howell crossing the plate for the win.
   Lovelace went 2-for-3 from the plate with two doubles, while Matt Plaas was credited with the win at the mound.
   Zach Miller was 2-for-3 at the plate for Cash Express, while Justin Bailey went 2-for-4 at bat.
   Twins 13
   Tri-Cities Nissan 2
   The Twins put the brakes on Tri-Cities Nissan, grabbing the decisive win.
   It was an early lead of 2-1 for the Nissan in the first frame, after C.J. Bowling and Ethan Fleenor both came home to score.
   The Twins took control in the third frame, when Lance Reed crushed a triple to drive in Caleb Durant and Clayton Ray, as they didn't look back from then on, moving toward the comfortable victory.
   Benjamin McKinney was 2-for-3 from the plate for the Twins, while Reed seized the win from the mound.
   C.J. Bowling and Dylan Carr produced the two hits of the contest for Tri-Cities Nissan, as they both went 1-for-2 on the evening.
   Friday's Games
   Carter County Bank 8
   Burgie Drug 5
   Carter County Bank scored four runs in both the first and fifth innings to score the win over Burgie Drug.
   Caleb Palm, Cody Forbes, Justin Fuqua, Derek Mann and Chase Depew all had one hit apiece for CCB.
   Ryan Thomas, Darrell Wilson, Luke Martinez and Jordan Meredith countered with hits for Burgie. Mann score the win for CCB.
   Twins 1
   Cash Express 1
   The time limit halted a pitching duel between Lance Reed and Jake Davis after five innings of play. Reed of the Twins and Davis of Cash each had given up only one hit and one run going into the final inning.
   Craig Sheets got the lone hit for the Twins, while Michael Hutchins was the only one to reach base via a hit for Cash Express.