Carter County Bank squeaks out win over Tri-Cities Nissan

By Rebecca Pierson
STAR Staff

   Carter County Bank narrowly defeated Tri-Cities Nissan Saturday afternoon at T. J. Burleson Memorial Field, 3-2. It all came down to the first and the third innings.
   Tri-Cities' C.J. Bowling opened up the game with a grounder to shortstop Derek Mann for a single. Ethan Fleenor then popped a fly and was out by pitcher Chase Depew. Bowling stole third during Drew Clark's time at bat and went home after Clark's hit to the left-center field. Jake Miller was walked and Zack Miller struck out.
   Clark would earn the second run off a foul ball by Dylan Carr, who struck out to end the top of the first.
   Carter County's Depew tapped a short one for a single. before Brooks Cochran walked. Matthew Potter and Mann would strike out. Depew would sneak home before Landon South struck out, leaving Tri-Cities with a one run lead.
   The second inning and the top of the third would be runless, but Carter Co. took over the lead in the bottom of the third.
   With two out, Clark walked the next three batters and Tri-Cities gained two unearned runs by Cochran and Potter to take the lead.
   Tri-Cities' Ethan Fleenor took his turn at the mound to close out the third after South was caught out at first by a short grounder. Fleenor had five strikeouts in three innings.
   Carter Co.'s Mann took over pitching in the fourth and allowed no hits, two walks and no runs.
   Depew had seven strikeouts and allowed only one hit. Clark threw seven strikeouts, walked four and allowed only one hit.
   "They started off slow," said Carter Co. head coach David Mann. "We made a couple of errors and allowed them some runs at the start of the ball game.
   "Depew's shoulder was hurting him a bit, so I relieved him with Derek Mann," he said. "It was a pretty good ballgame. They made some good plays there at the end that kept us in the victory column."
   "We didn't show up to play," Tri-Cities head coach Dale Bowling said. "They didn't play as well as they did earlier in the week. When you do that against good teams you end up at the short end of it."
   Carter County Motors 8
   Six Sigma 0
   Good hitting by Carter County Motors won the game against Six Sigma. Sigma pitchers Cody Tolley and Logan Loving combined for four strikeouts and one walk, while Carter Co.'s pitchers Casey Sheffield and Jake Hodge combined for 10 strikeouts and four walks.
   Carter Co. would earn one run in the first by Casey Sheffield, but it would be the third inning that would decide the game.
   Tolley would knock down the first two batters off the top. Stacey Sheffield would ground the ball towards third for a double, then Casey Sheffield hit a line drive to right field for a triple and an RBI.
   Coby Hyder followed with a double to left field for an RBI. Jake Hodge was walked, and Seth Fleenor grounded one to second for an RBI.
   Cody Anderson then had a hit to right field for a triple and two RBIs. From there Nick Kyte grounded it to third, but was caught out at first to close out the inning.
   Sigma made its some opportunity in the fourth. Seth Davis grounded one past second base for a single. Loving then hit one two third, but Davis was out at second. Cody Tolley then drove one to second. The second baseman momentarily lost the ball but managed to get Loving out on second.
   Tolley made it to first on the error. Conner Plaas would the hit a single, but Justin Reagan would strike out without bringing around a runner.
   "Our boys sucked it up and played good," Carter County head coach Richard Sheffield said. "Six Sigma gave us a good game and held on. We brought Jake in to pitch in the fifth inning. He shut them down the rest of the way. Casey started them off good, then Jake came in finished it. Our boys hit the ball good all day. I was proud of all of them. They gave us a good game."
   "They had a really good effort," Six Sigma head coach Rick Richardson said.
   "I am proud of them. It may not show on the scoreboard, but they are getting better. We have had tough trouble hitting the ball this year. They are coming around though. The first of the year they were taking a lot of pitches -- not trying to hit the ball. Now they are swinging at them and that is a big improvement."