Although the Troup Tigers are still trying to get their bats warmed up, the pitching has been exceptional, as has the defense.
The result is a 3-1 record, with the latest win coming against visiting Auburn High on Monday.
Behind a second consecutive stellar starting outing from Garrett McClurg, and a game-winning double from Jacob Ozley in the eighth inning, the Tigers earned a 3-2 victory.
The Tigers have only scored 10 runs in four games, with five of those coming in one game, but they’re finding a way to win despite the sluggish offense.
“We’ve kept true to the trend,” Troup head coach Craig Garner said. “We’ve been playing pretty good defense, and the pitching’s been pretty good. It’s kept us in ballgames.”
McClurg has started two of Troup’s games, and he has been dominant both times.
In the season opener, McClurg pitched a complete game in a 2-0 win over Northgate.
He returned to the mound on Monday, and he went seven innings and gave up two runs (one earned) and five hits.
McClurg left after seven innings, and Ozley pitched a perfect eighth inning to get the win.
Troup head coach Craig Garner said McClurg has been efficient with his pitches so far, which has allowed him to throw 14 innings in two games.
“He’s keeping his pitch count down,” Garner said. “He had like 85 pitches. He ended up on the nose where we were going to pull him.”
Auburn struck first, taking advantage of two Troup errors to score an unearned run in the top of the third.
Troup responded with two runs in the bottom of the inning.
Brandon Butts led off with a single, he stole second, and he scored when Auburn’s defense misplayed a Cody Doughman bunt.
Jonathan Foster later came through with a sacrifice fly, and Troup had a 2-1 lead.
Auburn tied it in the fifth when JJ Shaffer came through with a two-out RBI double.
The Tigers threatened to regain the lead in the seventh inning when Bo Halcomb doubled with one out, but he was stranded on second.
After Auburn went down in order in the top of the eighth, Troup won it in the bottom of the inning.
Doughman got things started with a base hit, and Adams then put down a bunt, and the Auburn catcher whipped a throw to second for the forceout.
Two batters later, with Adams still standing on first, Ozley ripped the ball to the right-field fence for the game-winning hit.
Because it was a 3-2 count on Ozley, Adams took off as soon as the pitch was released, and he scored easily.
The Tigers have played four close games so far, and they’ve won three of them.
Troup’s only loss was a 1-0 setback against Newnan.
“We talked about the Newnan game and letting that one slip away,” Garner said. “We’re going to be faced with these situations many times. I like the way it’s going.”
Troup returns to the field on Thursday for a road game at Hardaway.