Busy Diamond Dogs split games at Lamar
By Nick Nunn
The varsity Diamond Dogs won two of four games last week to put their record so far this season at 4-3. After beating Social Circle last Wednesday 7-3, Morgan County traveled to Lamar County to play a double header against the Trojans. The Dogs lost the first game 3-7 but won the second 10-5. Monday, Morgan County lost 5-11 to Rockdale County in their second matchup of the year.
Stewart Spence drove in three of Morgan County’s seven runs against Social Circle while going one-for-three in at bats for the night, which proved a big help in assuring the Dogs’ 7-3 victory over Social Circle.
Morgan County’s pitching throughout the night was sufficient to hold Social Circle at bay. Ross Kirkpatrick, the starting pitcher, allowed the only runs for the night, and Clark Owen, who relieved Kirkpatrick in the fifth, struck two batters out while walking only two.
In the first game of the double header against Lamar County, Morgan County couldn’t get their offense off to the start it needed to keep pace with Lamar’s scoring.
The Trojans’ pitching racked up seven strikeouts in the first game, while their batters were able to hammer the Dogs’ pitcher Brantley Frost, who gave up four earned runs on eight hits in the first three innings.
However, the Dogs returned to the field amidst miserable weather and proved that they were not just going to lay down for Lamar County in the second game.
Stewart Spence drove in the first runner of the game to give Morgan County an early one-run lead.
After Lamar County scored a single run in the bottom of the second, the Dogs took the opportunity to pounce on their opponents, scoring three runs in the third and another in the top of the fourth.
However, the Trojans held their ground and matched Morgan County run for run, tying the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the fourth.
The tie held steady through the end of the regulation seventh inning, and it wouldn’t break in the eighth either.
But in the ninth, tired, weary, cold after their fifteenth inning of baseball that night, the Dogs were able to muster an impressive rally, scoring five runs on a couple of walked batters, a hit batsman, and a double apiece by Clark Owen and Clayton Gasaway, making the score 10-5.
The Trojans could rise to the occasion, going down on three batters in the bottom of the ninth.
Morgan County’s final game of the week, a rematch against Rockdale County after their 12-8 loss to Morgan County earlier this season, ended poorly; the Dogs lost 5-11 after being battered late in the game by Rockdale.
Neither team’s offense picked up through the early parts of the game. By the end of the fifth, both teams had scored five runs and were waiting for a tiebreaker, which Rockdale provided by scoring six runs in the bottom of the sixth inning.
The lead proved insurmountable for the Dogs, and the game ended 5-11.
Although eight runs scored during Ross Kirkpatrick’s tenure of two innings on the mound, only one of those runs was earned. The rest were allowed to score because of a combination or infield and outfield errors, which allowed Rockdale’s batters to reach and advance at a rapid pace.
The JV baseball team played Newton County beat 12-2 in six innings last Thursday night.
Morgan County was able to keep a steady lead over Newton throughout the night, but, in the sixth inning, the Dogs’ were granted a few free passes.
Of the seven runners that scored in the sixth, three were walked onto base, and two reached on errors. Two singles by Sam Couch and Maclane Zant were enough for Morgan County’s seven run spree, which ended the game due to the run rule.
Tuesday, the JV team played Oconee at home, and the varsity team played Eastside at home Wednesday.
Today, the JV team plays at Salem at 5:55, and the next varsity game will be at Eastside next Monday at the same time.
Printed in the March 7, 2013 edition