Coming out swinging

By Kevin Eckleberry

July 13, 2014

They came out slugging, and they never let up.

The Troup County National all-stars scored two runs on just two swings at the start of Sunday’s game against Albany American1, and the onslaught continued until the game ended after the top of the fourth inning because of the mercy rule.

Troup National captured a 10-0 victory to move to 2-0 in the Dixie Youth Baseball 11-12-year-old state tournament at the Harris Baseball Complex.

Troup National thumped Augusta West 15-4 on Saturday, so it has scored 25 runs in two tournament games.

In Sunday’s game, Troup coach Chad Marchman told his first couple of batters to be aggressive early in the count if they got a pitch to their liking.

“Red on first pitch. That’s the game,” Marchman said. “That’s what I told my first two. Let’s set the tempo right off the bat. Go ahead and smack it.”

Troup National hit four home runs, two by Chad Marchman, and one each by Cade Garner and Caleb McCurry.

That was plenty of support for Marchman, who threw four shutout innings to get the win.

It was an impressive victory against a team Marchman figures is one of the best in the tournament.

“That could be the second or third best team here. Our kids were nervous about this yesterday,” Marchman said. “I told them, just go out there and play your game.”

It didn’t take Troup National long to put the first runs on the scoreboard.

On the game’s first pitch, Marchman reached on a single.

On the second pitch, Garner got a pitch to his liking, and he ripped it over the left-field fence for a two-run home run.

The next two batters, McCurry and Will Flowers, each reached on singles, but Albany pitcher Denver Bryant got out of trouble without any more runs scoring.

Neither team scored in the second inning, although Troup National threatened after putting runners on second and third with one out.

A pair of strikeouts ended that threat, and Troup National took a 2-0 lead to the third inning.

After Marchman set Albany down in the top of the third, Troup National went to work in the bottom of the inning against Albany’s second pitcher.

“I knew when they brought that kid in that threw real hard that a few on our team were going to smack it,” Marchman said. “If it’s hard and right there, you can time it.”

Troup’s hitters had no problems with their timing in the inning.

Marchman led off with a solo home run to make it a 3-0 game, and two batters later, McCurry’s homer pushed the lead to 4-0.

After back-to-back singles by Flowers and Will Alford, Jake Cardwell’s RBI single gave Troup National a 5-0 lead.

Carson Garner kept the rally going with a walk, and Jacquez Smith followed with a two-run double, and Troup National was on top 7-0.

With two outs, Marchman stepped to the plate for the second time in the inning, and he launched a ball over the outfield fence for a three-run home run to cap the scoring.

After Albany American failed to score in the top of the fourth, the game ended because of the run rule.

On Saturday, Troup National made quick work of Augusta West.

Marchman and Flowers each hit home runs, and Cardwell pitched three innings to get the win.

Dawson Wright pitched the final two innings in a game shortened to five innings.