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Archives 04-28-2004

Sports

 

 

 

Cats win over 7-AA foes to maintain share of lead
Cats win two as season nears end
Lady Cats sweep double-header



 

Cats win over 7-AA foes to maintain share of lead

By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN staff
Two more district wins maintained the Wildcats' claim to the top spot in District 7-AA last week.

The Livingston Academy baseball team started the week with a non-district game at Monterey on Monday, April 19. LA overpowered the Monterey Wildcats 11-1 to give Shane Livingston a win on the mound.

LA Baseball Coach Pat Swallows said, "For not having thrown much this year, he did a really good job. I was surprised with the way he stepped in and threw without having a lot of innings."

Livingston gave up 4 hits in the game.

Cody King hit a home run while going 3 for 4 and driving in 5 runs. Andrew Dixon had 3 hits, and Johnny Cyrus and Brian Colson each had 2 hits in the game.

"We are still swinging the bats pretty well,"

Coach Swallows said. Coach Swallows was also pleased with his team's defensive effort.

"We played some pretty solid defense," he said. "We didn't make any errors in that game."

Livingston Academy hosted Cannon County the following night in a District 7-AA matchup. The Cats took down the Lions 11-4.

Tyler Thrasher was the winning pitcher for LA, striking out 8 and allowing 2 earned runs.

"He threw well," Coach Swallows said.

The Cats next faced the Owls of Smith County in a District 7-AA home game on Thursday, April 22. Livingston again dominated, decimating the Carthage team 15-5.

Cody Sells was the winning pitcher, pushing his record to 4-2 on the season. He struck out 10, and allowed 2 earned runs.

"He just really did a good job," Coach Swallows said. "Every time that he takes the mound, we've got a chance to win.

"First of all, he throws well. Secondly, I think the boys believe he's going to win, and they play hard behind him."

Coach Swallows was concerned about 3 errors the Cats committed in the game.

"Our bats have helped us overcome mistakes that we've made, up to a point."

Both Andrew Dixon and Johnny Cyrus hit their first home runs of the season. Cyrus drove in 5 runs in the game. Cody King and Cody Sells also homered. Brian Colson hit 3 singles as the Cats powered

The win raised LA's district record to 9-1, still tied for 1st place with DeKalb County. The overall was 14-7, but took a dive in the Soddy Daisy Tournament at Chattanooga on Friday and Saturday, April 23-24.

Coach Swallows knew the Cats would be overmatched, but believed the level of opposition would only help his team.

"We just wanted to see how well we would stack up and what we could do against people like that," he said. "You can only get better if you see people like that. We played five triple-A teams down there."

Livingston played Rhea County on Friday afternoon. Brian Colson took a tough 4-6 loss.

"We should have won the ballgame," Coach Swallows said. "We made too many mistakes in crucial situations; we were tied 3-3 going into the fifth."

Colson not only did a good job on the mound, he also impressed with the bat.

"Colson hit his 9th homer of the year, out of Eagle Stadium, probably 375 to 400 feet; I mean a bomb," Coach Swallows said.

Later that night, Livingston took on Ooltewah. The Cats were 11-0 roadkill for the eventual tournament champs.

Brian Colson had LA's only hit of the night.

"They were as solid as any team we've seen in a good while," Coach Swallows said. "We didn't make any errors in the five innings. We just couldn't get them out."

Johnny Cyrus was tagged with the loss.

"Johnny didn't throw that bad," Coach Swallows said. "It's just hard to keep a good team like that down."

Cyrus gave up 7 runs, and reliever Cody King gave up 4.

With the seniors off on a trip on Saturday, the Cats lacked their most experienced players as they faced Knoxville-Karns.

Shane Livingston was the sacrificial lamb in the 1-12 loss.

"They were just another solid club," Coach Swallows said. "We made three errors, but it didn't make a whole lot of difference. They were just that good."

Freshman Griffen Lee pitched the final 3 innings, and gave up 3 runs.

Next up was Hixson, who blanked the Cats 0-7.

Tyler Thrasher took the loss.

"We didn't get any breaks in that game," Coach Swallows said. "They were just better than us."

LA took on Memphis-Fairley on Sunday, and came out with a close 6-8 loss.

"Another game we could have won," Coach Swallows said. "We gave up 5 runs in the first 2 innings on a single and 4 errors."

"Cody Sells pitched his heart out," Coach Swallows said.

He struck out 10, gave up 5 hits, and allowed only 1 earned run.

"We ended up making 6 errors," Coach Swallows said of his team's fielding woes.

The team had a shot through most of the game and fought back to take the lead at 6-5, but couldn't hold it.

The scheduled game against White County for Monday, April 26 was rained out, and the scheduled game for Tuesday, April 27 against Grundy County was cancelled.

Livingston Academy will host Cumberland County on Wed-nesday, April 28 in a non-district game, then will host district foe Jackson County on Thursday, April 29.

LA will host Pickett County in a double-header on Friday, April 30, then will travel to James-town to play the York Dragons on Tuesday, May 4 in the final district game of the regular season. A scheduled game against Macon County for Saturday, May 1 has been cancelled.

 

Cats win two as season nears end

Lyndon Johnson/OCN staff
Ben Jolley kicks it downfield for LA during last Thursday's 1-0 victory versus Lebanon High School.

By LYNDON JOHNSON, OCN staff
With the Livingston Academy senior class headed to Mickey-town on their senior trip, the remaining majority of the LA boys soccer team hit the field just like they always do on Monday, practicing in the form of a half-field scrimmage in order to keep in top shape.

A kick late in the practice evoked a few sarcastic "woooo!"s before everyone was dismissed to the locker room as it sailed well over the net, thanks in no small part to the foot of Wesley Puckett.

Coming out of goal, where he had been playing during the practice scrimmage in the absence of senior goalkeeper Drew Randolph, LA Soccer Coach Ethan King stopped to comment on the past week's duo of contests before heading inside.

"We gave up a late goal in the second half, but that's okay," he said of the first of the games, played on the road at Friendship Christian School on Tuesday, April 20.

It was okay because the game turned out a 4-1 victory for the Wildcats anyway, with Westley Burnett handling half of the goal-scoring, with help from Jacob Pennington and Alex Gunnels, who scored the other two.

"We actually had other opportunities to score," King said, "but we were controlling the ball and we played a very good game- passing, getting good shooting opportunitiesÉand we played some good defense.

"Alex Gunnels got his goal off of an indirect kick," said the coach with some enthusiasm.

"It was a nice little set-up that they had been practicing all year, and they finally got in a situation in a game where they could do it, and they scored off of it, so it was really nice. I think Wesley Puckett and Jonathan McGill assisted,Ó he said.

"Wes Burnett had two goals, and actually had chances to score a couple more. He's been playing very well lately."

He and the rest of the team got a chance to play very well back on the home pitch versus Lebanon High School on Thursday, April 22.

An aggressive game on both sides of the field, the contest would come out in LA's favor, with the Cats pulling out a 1-0 victory over the Blue Devils. Burnett was the winning and only goal scorer of the game.

"He was able to kind of get around and beat his man a lot. It forced them to slide some people over, and that gave us some good opportunities.

"He was able to get some breakaway opportunities. He missed one early in the game, but he made up for it the second time by putting it in the back of the net. That was the difference in the game.

"In the first half, we played really well. We passed the ball well and controlled the game for the most part. In the second half, they came back on us a little bit and had some opportunities to score. As a matter of fact, they had one right in front of the net and they just kicked it over."

Keeper Drew Randolph got his share of chances to step out and make saves.

"Randolph had a really big game. He played a really physical game and controlled his box. He had some people trying to run into him, and I think they ended up on the worse end of most of those incidents."

With two games remaining on the regular season schedule, those at home versus DeKalb County on Friday, April 30 and York Institute on Tuesday, May 4, the Wildcats have an overall record of 7-4-2, with a perfect 5-0 in their home district. Those last two games are all that remain in their road to the district tournament.

"I think DeKalb's at second right now in the district. If we win, we're first; if we tie, we're first. We want to end strong, we want to get a nice, solid win."

Kickoff for the game is 5 p.m.

 

Lady Cats sweep double-header

Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
Whitney Walker makes a running grab of a pop foul for an out against York Institute.

By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN staff The young guns of the Lady Wildcats unloaded on Pickett County's Lady Bobcats in a double-header on Monday, April 19.

LA Softball Coach Mike Johnson said, "The normal nine starters did not play, because Byrdstown's not a very strong team, and it gave some of the younger players a chance to play."

The Lady Wildcats overwhelmed the Lady Bobcats 17-4 in the first game.

Tara Taylor was the winning pitcher. She struck out 8 batters, and gave up 4 hits.

"Tara Taylor pitched a good game," Coach Johnson said. "We had some mental mistakes; of course, that was some of the first action some of them had seen in a varsity game this year."

The Lady Cats had 13 hits in the game.

"We had 10 walks and never struck out," Coach Johnson said.

Of the 33 times the Cats came up to bat, they got on base 23 times.

Brittany McDonald scored all 4 times she went to the plate. She had 3 hits, and a walk.

Kirstie Dillon also scored all 4 times she went to the plate. Whitney Sells was 3 for 3.

"Everybody that batted scored a run," Coach Johnson said. "It was just a good team effort."

The Lady Cats played another game with the same basic lineup, and won 18-2.

Tara Taylor gave up only 2 runs on 2 hits, and struck out 5.

LA had 10 hits and walked 9 times.

Tiffany Pennington, Heather Carwile, and Ashley McDonald each scored all three times they went to bat. Ashley McDonald hit an inside-the-park home run.

"Everybody that got up to bat scored," Coach Johnson said again of the team's proficiency. "I was proud of the way they played. Some young girls got a chance to play and played well."

Livingston Academy hosted Smith County on Tuesday, April 20, and lost the district matchup 5-11.

"We played well in the game," Coach Johnson said. "We hung with them throughout the game."

Ashley Howard pitched into the seventh inning, and threw just over 150 pitches.

"They were fouling off a lot of them," Coach Johnson said. "It wore her down there at the end."

She gave up 14 hits, 9 runs, and struck out 3.

Tara Taylor came in and pitched the final innings, giving up 3 hits, 2 runs, and striking out 1.

"It was real close there at the end," Coach Johnson said. "It was 5-4 at the start of the seventh. It was a lot closer than the final score showed.

"This was the first time we ever scored against Smith County while I've been coaching. We had a total of 13 hits against them. We weren't quite as intimidated by Smith County as we normally are."

Aspen Allen scored 2 runs, and Casey Emerton, Stasha Babb, and Whitney Sells each scored a run.

Whitney Walker and Casey Emerton each went 3 for 4, and Stasha Babb went 2 for 3.

"All in all we had a lot of hits in the game and had a lot of people on base," Coach Johnson said. "Overall, I was impressed by the way we played. We gave them a run for their money for six innings."

Livingston Academy then hosted York Institute on Wednesday, April 21.

Tara Taylor was in command through 6 and 2-3 innings, then, leading 2-0, everything fell apart for the Lady Wildcats.

"We were one out away from winning the ballgame. All we had to do was get one more out," Coach Johnson said. "After the second out, they had 6 straight hits. They loaded the bases and hit a little blooper over the second baseman's head and that was the game."

Ashley Howard was brought in and struck out the only batter she faced.

Whitney Walker and Sarah Maynord scored LA's runs.

The next day, Livingston Academy hosted a double-header against Cannon County.

The Lady Cats overpowered the Lady Lions 10-1.

"They came out and dominated this game," Coach Johnson said of his team's aggressive play. "We had 13 hits in the game, and only had 1 strikeout. We've done a lot better in not striking out recently."

Sarah Maynord went 3 for 3, and Lisa Reeder went 2 for 2.

Kirstie Dillon had another inside-the-park home run.

Tara Taylor gave up only 3 hits and a run and struck out 3.

The Lady Cats won the nightcap 5-4.

"We trailed most of the game," Coach Johnson said. "We finally did to them what York did to us.

"We were down 4-1 at one point. We kept battling back.

"Howard pitched the first three innings, but I think she was still tired. They scored all 4 runs off of her. She gave up 9 hits.

"Taylor came in the last 2 innings and pretty much shut them down. She only gave up 1 hit in those 2 innings.

"I loved to see them come back and win a game," Coach John-son said.

The win moved the Lady Cats' District 7-AA record to 5-3.

The LA squad travelled to Cane Creek Park over the weekend to play in the Duff Tournament, hosted by Cookeville High School.

First up for Livingston was Siegel, a Class AAA team from the Murfreesboro area. The Lady Cat's fell 0-4.

"I think we played rather well against them," Coach Johnson said. "They had a really good pitcher, and I'm glad we got to see a good pitcher. She had a strange delivery.

"I was happy the way we played."

Ashley Howard gave up 4 runs on 8 hits.

"The next game was a forfeit, so we got a win out of that," Coach Johnson said.

"The next morning we played Watertown," he said. "We were missing four seniors; they went on the senior trip."

Whitney Walker, Casey Emerton, Sarah Maynord, and Aspen Allen were all gone.

The Lady Cats fell 1-4.

"We had a ton of baserunners in that game," Coach Johnson said. "Something would happen and we'd end the inning. We just couldn't produce runs. That showed that we were missing our big hitters."

Whitney Sells scored the team's only run.

"Tara Taylor had a great game going through the first three innings, allowed 8 hits," Coach Johnson said.

"I think we played well against them with just underclassmen playing."

The last game of the tournament for LA was Smith County in the non-district event. The Carthage team prevailed 9-2.

"At the end, they put another pitcher in and we started hitting off of her, and scored 2 runs in the final inning," Coach Johnson said.

Tara Taylor pitched the first two innings, and Ashley Howard pitched the last 5. Taylor gave up 3 runs, Howard 6 runs.

Tara Taylor and Jessica McDonald scored runs for LA. Whitney Sells went 2 for 2.

"We played okay," Coach Johnson said. "We could have played better.

"Everybody was tired. It was our 10th game of the week. Everybody was worn out. It was a long week."

LA's overall record stands at 16-14 after the week's play. Livingston Academy will host Upperman's Lady Bees in a District 7-AA game Thursday, April 29.

"That will be a big game for us," Coach Johnson said. "We'll still be without our seniors, and we really need to win this game to solidify our hold on third place in the district."

The Lady Wildcats will host Jackson County's Lady Blue Devils on Tuesday, May 4 in another District 7-AA game before closing out the district's regular season in a double-header at Smithville against the DeKalb County Lady Tigers.

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