Cats defeat Tigers
for first district win
season with dual wins
Double-headers give Lady Cats three wins
LA tennis team
get first wins of new season
LA track & field
team ready for 2004
Cats defeat Tigers
for first district win
By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN staff
A shaky start and a big district win marked the beginning of the
2004 baseball season for the Livingston Academy Wildcats.
LA Baseball Coach Pat Swallows said, "We did about what I
expected the first week, being really inconsistent – playing well
a couple of innings, then not playing well a couple of innings,
and those innings ended up hurting us on Tuesday night against Macon."
The March 16 season opener against Macon County wasn't kind to
the home team.
LA gave up 5 runs in the second inning.
"Brian Colson was on the mound. He hadn't thrown as much as
our other pitchers because he has been in basketball," Coach
The rust showed as Colson gave up the 5 runs on 7 hits.
"He was leaving the ball up in the zone and it ended up hurting
him," Coach Swallows said.
Colson had injury added to insult after giving up those runs.
"He got hurt when the ball came back and hit him on the thumb,"
Coach Swallows said. "It was cold that day and he rattled it
again when he was at bat.
"So, we had to take him out. Johnny Cyrus came in and pitched
two good innings."
The Wildcats clawed their way back to tie the game at 5.
"We played well to come back," Coach Swallows said. "With
two outs, we scored 5 times, got some big hits. But we just couldn't
Macon struck for 7 runs in the fourth inning, sealing a 12-5 win.
Livingston Academy hosted DeKalb County the following day in a
District 7-AA game.
"We played really well," Coach Swallows said.
"We played just super defense until the sixth. We made a couple
of mistakes in the sixth that let them get back in the game."
Until that sixth inning bobble, the Wildcats had steadily built
a 4-0 lead, scoring a run in the second inning, another in the third,
and 2 runs in the fifth.
Cody Sells was on the mound and seemed to be on cruise control,
until the sixth inning.
"I think he got tired, a little bit," Coach Swallows
That and a couple of fielding mistakes allowed the powerful DeKalb
County Tigers an opportunity to score runs, and they proceeded to
put 3 on the board before Sells and the Wildcats put a stop to it.
"Cody Sells threw more pitches than I wanted him to, but did
a great job on the mound. He didn't want to come out, so I turned
it over to him and let him finish it for us," Coach Swallows
Sells struck out 10 Tigers in the game and allowed only 3 walks.
"We made three errors behind him, and two of them back-to-back
in the sixth that let them get back in the game," Coach Swallows
said. "Overall, defensively, with the exception of that one
inning, we played pretty well."
The Cats didn't play too shabbily on offense either.
"Tyler Thrasher is continuing to hit the ball. He was 2 for
3," Coach Swallows said. "Cody King did a great job, with
2 outs he got 2 big hits on curve balls.
"And Cody Sells also helped himself with 2 hits and 2 RBIs."
Brian Colson had 2 hits, including a home run.
"That was big," Coach Swallows said of Colson's homer.
"That got a little confidence going there in the second."
Going 1-1 in the first week was much easier to take with the win
coming against a district opponent the caliber of DeKalb County.
"We were happy to play more consistent and get a big district
win at home, which is big because they are one of the better teams,"
Coach Swallows said of DeKalb County's Tigers.
After playing Cumberland County at Crossville on Monday, March
22, and Upperman at Baxter on Tuesday, March 23, the Wildcats will
travel to Woodbury on Thursday, March 25 to play the Cannon County
Livingston Academy will host Knoxville-Bearden at noon Friday,
The Cats will travel to Sparta on Saturday, March 27 to play the
Warriors, then will travel to Carthage on Tuesday, March 30 to play
the Smith County Owls.
Soccer starts season
with dual wins
By LYNDON JOHNSON, OCN staff
The Livingston Academy Wildcats have started the 2004 soccer season
off in good fashion, with two wins last week against tough district
First was a game at Smith County on Monday, March 15, where the
LA bunch fired in missiles right and left to take the victory in
the Owls' nest at 6-0.
Jacob Pennington handled the bulk of LA scoring, making the proverbial
"hat trick" plus one with four goals to his credit for
the duration of the game. Westley Burnett came up with two goals
of his own to give the scoreboard its final tally.
Burnett recorded the only assist of the game for the Wildcats.
The Big Blue then loaded up the bus to head to Jamestown to play
York Institute last Tuesday, March 16, where they won a hard-fought
Alex Gunnels had two goals in the contest, with Burnett booting
in another to give the Cats their three.
A foul committed inside the box by the LA squad resulted in York
getting a penalty kick opportunity, which they made good on to score
their only goal.
The Wildcats will head to Smyrna on Friday, March 26 and will be
there until Sunday, March 28 to compete in a tournament where they
will play larger, class-AAA teams such as Riverdale High School.
Coach Ethan King isn't too worried, and sounds sort of anxious
to play the bigger teams.
"We are looking forward to the Smyrna tournament. It will
be a good measuring stick to see what we need to work on for the
rest of the season. We will see some great competition and it will
be a true challenge for our team."
\After play ends in Smyrna, Livingston will make up the game originally
scheduled for March 18 at Wilson Central. Due to TSSAA basketball
competition, the game was moved to Tuesday, March 30 at Wilson Central.
Lady Cats three wins
By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN staff
Three wins in two double-headers are a promising way to start a
season, and Livingston Academy Lady Wildcats Softball Coach Mike
Johnson is cautiously pleased.
"You know, 3-1 after one week, that's pretty good," he
In all four of the games played last week, the Lady Cats made a
late run to either win the game or pull close enough to make the
other team sweat. That is a cause for concern for Coach Johnson.
"We've got to score early and often," he said.
He went on to say, "We've got to learn to hit the ball better.
We've got to get more runs early, make it less nerve wracking for
me and for them, too. If they get up early, the game's easier to
The 2004 softball season opened for the Lady Cats at Sparta where
they took on the White County Warriorettes on Monday, March 15.
Livingston took the first game 5-4. LA scored a run on 2 hits
in the second inning, then added another on 3 hits in the third,
with a big shot being a triple by Whitney Walker.
Ashley Howard tripled in the fifth, but no one was on base.
In the sixth inning, the Lady Cats broke the game open with 3 runs
on 4 hits and 2 walks.
Overall, LA had 12 hits in scoring the 5 runs.
Ashley Howard got the win on the mound for Livingston. She allowed
12 hits and 4 runs, while striking out 7 and giving up 7 walks.
"It was a good performance," Coach Johnson said. "We
won the game and you can't beat that, starting off the first game
of the year winning.
"I was impressed with the way Ashley pitched. She pitched
"The defense was good," he added.
As good as they were, Coach Johnson was still faced with a weakness
in the team's play.
"We had 7 strikeouts also," he said. "I think that's
a few too many. We need to attack the ball more."
The second game saw a pitcher change forced early when Ashley Howard
took a "come-back" line drive off of her pitching hand
in the first inning.
"She stayed in the game to pitch the second inning, but she
wasn't the same. She gave up 6 runs in the first two innings on
"It hit her right on her thumb. I thought it might have fractured
it, but she's okay."
Newcomer Tara Taylor was brought in.
"It was the first game she had ever pitched to more than just
one or two batters. She did real well. I was real proud of her."
Taylor struck out 5 batters and gave up 3 runs on 3 hits, while
giving up 6 walks.
The batting came on slow for the Lady Cats in the nightcap.
LA plated only a single run in the first four innings of the game,
and was down 1-8 going into the fifth inning. The Lady Cats scored
2 runs in the fifth, but the home team responded with a run to keep
LA at bay 3-9.
Livingston scored 5 two-out runs in the seventh inning, and placed
runners at second and third.
"All we needed was one more hit to win the game," Coach
Johnson said. "We just couldn't produce it."
Coach Johnson keeps the loss in perspective.
"We were one hit away from winning the game, so you can't
complain too bad," he said. "I was real proud of the way
they stayed in the game, battled back, and came close to winning
The Lady Wildcats travelled to Monterey on Thursday, March 18
to take on the Lady Wildcats of Monterey High School.
LA scored a run in the first inning, then waited until the last
inning of the five-inning game to put 6 straight hits into play
to score 3 runs and take a 4-1 win.
"When they get on a roll, they get on a big roll," Coach
Johnson said. "They need to do that a little earlier."
Winning pitcher Ashley Howard gave up a run on 3 hits and struck
Whitney Walker scored 2 runs, and Andrea Borden and Lisa Reeder
each scored a run.
Howard helped her own cause by going 2 for 3. Walker was 2 for
In the second game, LA scored twice in the first inning, added
2 more runs in the third, and another in the fourth on the way to
Ashley Howard struck out 3 and gave up a run on 5 hits.
Stasha Babb went 2 for 3, and six other Lady Wildcats had a hit.
Howard, Babb, Walker, Reeder, and Whittney Sells each scored a
"We played real well in both games, played real good defense,"
Coach Johnson said. "They hit the ball against us, put it in
play a lot, but we got them out. Lisa Reeder had 7 putouts in the
first game, and ended with 10 or 11. She had a bunch of putouts."
Whitney Walker has been perfect through the season's first games.
She is 6 for 6 with 4 walks.
"She's gotten on base every time she's gone up to bat,"
Coach Johnson said.
For the most part though, the Lady Cats' weakness is the hitting,
and Coach Johnson's team has gone to work on rectifying the situation.
"We learned we've got to work on our batting. That's what
we've been doing all last week and this week. We're working on trying
to hit the ball," he said. "You don't have to get a hit
every time, but at least put the bat on the ball, put it in play.
We are striking out too many times."
After playing at Red Boiling Springs on Monday, March 22 and at
York Institute on Tuesday, March 23, the Lady Wildcats will travel
to Carthage on Thursday, March 25 to take on Smith County's Owlettes,
then travel to Byrdstown the following day to play a double-header
against Pickett County's Lady Bobcats. LA will play Cannon County's
Lady Lions at Woodbury on Tuesday, March 30.
Coach Johnson has confidence in his team's ability to put the pieces
in place to win.
"I think we can beat pretty much anybody we go up against
if we play well," he said. "We can compete in the district
this year for top honors. We may not be the number one team, but
we'll be right up there with them.
"All we need to do is play well, play hard, play together
as a team, and I think we can do well."
LA tennis team get
first wins of new season
BY MICHAEL SMITH OCN staff
Livingston Academy's tennis team came away with its first victory
of the season last week.
On Monday, March 15, the team visited Macon County and saw the
girls team win 6-2, while the boys team lost 4-1. Amber Carmack
played tough at the 4 seed, winning 8-2.
The team played at Mt. Juliet Christian on Tuesday, March 16. The
girls team came away with a 4-1 victory, with Dana Ledbetter and
Rachel Barlow winning handily. The boys team suffered a close 4-3
loss, and David Johnson got his first win.
The Wildcats visited Clay County in Celina on Thursday, March 18.
The girls team won, with a 3-0 win. The boys team won for the first
time with a 4-3 victory. Daniel Sweeney remains undefeated, having
to make a comeback in his match.
Coach Scott Cole was pleased with the week's results. "The
girls stayed true to form, dominating," he said, "The
guys should have two wins but were down a player, but they are surprising
me with their progress."
Next week LA will play Cannon County on Monday, March 29, and on
Tuesday, March 30, they will play Mt. Juliet Christian at home.
top of page
LA track & field
team ready for 2004
By MICHAEL SMITH, OCN staff
Livingston Academy's track & field team will begin its new season
on Tuesday, March 30.
LA Track & Field Coach Merl Smith said, "Hopefully, we'll
be able to get one or two people qualified for the sectional finals."
Fans of track & field should look for Heather Burchett in the shotput
competition, Alison West in the 100 to 200 yard dash, and Andrea
Maynard in hurdles competition, for the girls team.
The boys team also has its own share of talent. Mike Jones in short
distance, Kalihib Lander in long jump, and Chris Looper in the 800
race, are all looking to be in good form by the start of the season.
Overton County News
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