Votaw hurls Lawrence past Clinton Arrows

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, March 25, 2008

MONTICELLO — The Lawrence County Cougars defeated the ClintonArrows 5-2 in high school baseball action Monday night at JimmieDavis Park. The Cougars rode the 3-hit pitching of freshman ScottVotaw and sealed the game with a 4-run sixth-inning rally.

With the win, Coach Cory Keyes’ Cougars improved to 13-5 on theseason. Clinton, coached by Eddie Lofton, fell to 12-8.

“We had a good night,” Keyes said. “Scott pitched really well,we defended really well, and we got some timely hits against atough left-hander. It was a very good non-division win.”

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Votaw carried a 1-hit shutout into the seventh inning. By thattime, he enjoyed a 5-0 lead. Lawrence County’s first run came inthe second, when designated hitter Brandon Middlebrook blasted along solo homer off Clinton lefty Alex Gunn.

It remained 1-0 until the bottom of the sixth, when the Cougarsput together a clinching rally. With 1 out, Votaw doubled down thethird base line. Tyler Reeves followed with a duplicate of Votaw’shit, increasing the LCHS lead to 2-0. Conner Oakes then lofted asoft single to left, moving pinch runner Tucker Smith to third.

After an intentional walk to Middlebrook, Nathan Case laced awicked grounder past Arrow third baseman Josh Clarke. It was ruledan error, but 2 runs scored, making it a 4-0 game. After a walk toWesley Wilson, Cougar catcher Dillon Lee dropped a perfect squeezebunt, scoring Middlebrook with Lawrence County’s fifth run. Leealso had a fifth-inning double.

Through 6 innings, Clinton had only a Brooks Edwardsfourth-inning single. Votaw had faced only 19 batters, 1 over the6-inning minimum. In the seventh, Clarke singled and Jeff Tingledoubled. Both scored on back-to-back sacrifice flies, making it a5-2 final.

In earning his fifth win, Votaw gave up 3 hits, walked 1, andstruck out 6. Clinton’s Gunn pitched well. In 5 and 1/3 innings, hegave up 5 hits, walked or hit 5 batters, and struck out 4. He wasrelieved by Jeff Tingle in the sixth.

In junior varsity action, Clinton defeated Lawrence County12-2.