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BHS, Lawrence Co. bag wins

MONTICELLO-Lawrence County hosted Brookhaven and Mendenhall in abusy opening day of high school baseball action Saturday at JimmieDavis Park. Lawrence County proved to be the big winner of the day,beating both Mendenhall and Brookhaven.

In an early morning game, the host Cougars defeated Mendenhall 13-3in 5 innings. In the finale, LCHS edged Brookhaven by a 7-3 score.In between, Ole Brook handled Mendenhall, 9-3.

“It was a good opening day,” said sixth-year Cougar coach CoryKeyes. “We got two good wins, and played fairly clean baseball. Ithought all four of our pitchers threw well, and we defendedwell.”

In the marquis matchup of the day, Lawrence County scored 5first-inning runs off Panther starter Scottie Peavey, then held onfor the remainder of the game. Scott Votaw and Willie Buckley hadthe Cougars’ only hits of the inning, but an error, two walks, anda fielder’s choice that didn’t result in an out, all added up to abig inning for LCHS.

“Aside from that first inning, I thought our kids battled prettywell today,” said Panther coach Randy Spring, whose club wasmissing multiple key players. “We were a little shorthanded today,but Brandon (Foster) pitched us to a quality win againstMendenhall, and our guys battled back and gave themselves a chanceagainst Lawrence County.”

Peavey settled in and shut the Cougars down after that. Ole Brookhad scored 1 in the top of the first, and then scored single runsin the fourth and sixth to cut the Lawrence County margin to 5-3.LCHS tacked on 2 insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth.

Peavey, Elliott McKee, and Gabe Wilson had 2 hits each for thePanthers. J.B. Perkins added 1. Peavey was excellent after therocky first inning. In 4 innings, he struck out 6.

Willie Buckley pitched a solid 5 innings to earn the win forLawrence County. He struck out 4, and gave up 3 hits. Scott Votawearned a save by working the final 2 innings. He gave up 3 hits,and struck out 4 of the final 5 Panther batters. Buckley had 2 hitsfor the Cougars. Votaw and Jamie McCardle each got 1.

“We didn’t do much of anything after the first inning,” Coach Keyessaid, “but Willie and Scott were able to make those runs stand up.Willie plunked a couple of guys, but I was very pleased that wedidn’t walk anybody else.”

Brook 9, Mendenhall 3

In its first contest of the day, Ole Brook jumped to a 4-0 leadover Mendenhall, saw that lead cut to 4-3, then put the game awaywith a 5-run outburst in the bottom of the fifth. Peavey’s 3-run,first-inning homer was the biggest blow of the game. E.J.Henderson’s 2-run single keyed the fifth-inning rally.

Peavey led Brookhaven with 3 hits, and Henderson added 2. McKee,Foster, Wilson, and Perkins also had hits.

Foster pitched a complete game to earn the win. He allowed 10 hits,but did not walk a single Tiger batter, while striking out 8. Only1 of the 3 runs he allowed was earned.

Catcher Sanchez Cameron led Mendenhall with 3 singles. Taylor Toneyhad 2. Timmy Pierce took the loss, despite pitching 4 and 2/3 gutsyinnings.

Lawrence 13, Mendenhall 3

In the 10 a.m. season opener, Lawrence County erupted for 4 runs on4 hits in the bottom of the first, then roared to a 5-inning,10-run rule win over Mendenhall. Lawrence County scored in everyinning, piling up 11 hits in just 5 innings of hitting. Buckley,Dylan Lea, and Jacob Williams all had first-inning doubles.

LCHS had upped its lead to 6-0 when Mendenhall tagged Cougarstarter Ethan Foster for 3 runs in the top of the third. The bigblow was shortstop Taylor Teddlie’s 2-run homer. Timmy Pierce had 2hits for the Tigers. Teddlie, Choc Hubbard, and Josh Breaux alsohad hits.

Buckley and Lea led Lawrence County with 3 hits each. Williams,Keith Martin, Jamie McCardle, Tucker Smith, and Keith Smith alsohit safely.

Foster made his first career start for Lawrence County. Thesubmarining righty allowed 3 runs on 5 hits in 3-plus innings ofwork. Freshman southpaw Jordan McCaffrey pitched the final 2frames, holding Mendenhall hitless and striking out 2.

“We threw two totally untested high school pitchers, and they did agood job,” Keyes said. “Ethan gave us 9 good outs, and Jordan threwreally well. That was encouraging.”

Lawrence County edged Brookhaven 4-2 in a 4-inning junior varsitycontest, as Hunter Stephens threw a complete game. Brookhavenleft-hander Andrew Culver was very effective for the Panthers.