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80 Years Ago

Archives 05-05-2004





Wildcats win 2, lose 1 last week
LA soccer team seeded first despite absent player
Lady Cats defeat Lady Bees


Wildcats win 2, lose 1 last week

Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
Andrew Dixon slides safely into second base in the Wildcats' district win over Jackson County last week.

After another Class AAA roughing up, the Livingston Academy Wildcats took a District 7-AA win from Jackson County, then engaged in an old-fashioned slugfest with Pickett County.

The Cats took on the Class AAA Cumberland County Jets on Wednesday, April 28 and were left in the backwash of their afterburners.

LA Baseball Coach Pat Swallows said, "Four errors led to our demise; and they're a good triple-A team."

The Cats held strong through the first four innings, trailing 0-2. Then the game got out of hand.

"I thought we played pretty well for four innings," Coach Swallows said, "and Brian Colson pitched a good game for that period of time. Then we went south and started making mistakes, and they just kept wearing us out."

The seniorless Wildcats were overrun 13-1 by the Jets.

Cody Sells had 2 hits, Tyler Thrasher had a hit, and Josh Coffman scored LA's only run.

Brian Colson started the game for Livingston, then Tyler Livingston relieved Colson, and Johnny Cyrus struck out two Jets to finish the game for LA.

Livingston Academy hosted Jackson County's Blue Devils on Thursday, April 29 and notched a District 7-AA win.

"Cody Sells was at the top of his game," Coach Swallows said.

Sells struck out 14, walked 2, and gave up 2 singles in a 9-0 shutout.

He also helped his cause by hitting a triple and a home run, walking once, and scoring 3 runs.

"He had a big night," Coach Swallows said.

On offense, Coach Swallows gave kudos to Johnny Cyrus giving the Cats a boost when they needed one.

"Johnny Cyrus had a big hit in the sixth to break up a tight game," he said.

John Ward had 2 hits in the game.

What was scheduled as a home double-header against Pickett County on Friday, April 30 ended up being a scoring marathon, won by LA 16-12.

Tyler Thrasher started for the Wildcats, and ended up being the winning pitcher after pitching 3 and a third and giving up 6 runs on 4 hits. Tyler Livingston came in for two-thirds of an inning and gave up 2 runs on no hits.

"There were a couple of errors behind him," Coach Swallows said.

Johnny Cyrus pitched 2 innings and gave up 3 runs on 3 hits, and Brian Colson came in and gave up a run on a hit.

"So, we used four different pitchers trying to get them out," Coach Swallows said.

"It was one of those games where we didn't do a lot of things right and still won.

"Pickett County played really well against us," he said. "I thought they did a really good job. They jumped on us 4-0 in the first inning on 1 hit.

"We hit 6 batters, made 5 errors, and walked 3. We were very lucky to get a win."

The senior players returned from the class trip to Florida and made their presence known against Pickett County's Bobcats.

Cody King went 2 for 4 with a home run and 3 runs batted in, Lance Holland went 3 for 3 with 3 RBIs, and his first home run of the year, and Chad Moody went 1 for 1.

"They had been at Disney World for a week. I told everybody that maybe we all need to go to Disney World for a week," Coach Swallows said. "They came back and absolutely wore it out.

"We needed them. We had been struggling a little bit with the bats.

"I was real proud of them. They took their gloves and threw while they were there."

LA had 8 hits in the game. Johnny Cyrus went 2 for 3 and walked once.

The Cats were scheduled to travel to Jamestown on Tuesday, May 4 to play York Institute in a District 7-AA game.

"If we win that one we're co-champs in the district," Coach Swallows said, "but because of the tie-breaker DeKalb will get to host."

The first round of the playoffs will be held Friday, May 7 on the home field of the highest seed in each matchup of the single-elimination round. Then, the top seed will host the remainder of the tournament, which will be double-elimination.

"I really feel good about our chances, because we go three pitchers deep where everybody else basically has got one good pitcher," Coach Swallows said. "In a short series like a tournament, I feel pretty good about our chances."

LA soccer team seeded first despite absent player

Lyndon Johnson/OCN staff
Senior goalkeeper Drew Randolph makes a save for the Wildcats during last Friday's contest against DeKalb County's Tigers. Randolph's goalkeeping prowess helped the Cats achieve a 4-1 victory and finish off the regular season undefeated in district play.

The Livingston Academy soccer field was an unusually somber and quiet place last Friday during what should have been an upbeat practice just before the DeKalb County game as the Wildcats learned that junior player Jeffery Cummings was hospitalized with a tumor on his spine.

It didn't take long for word to spread about campus at LA that Cummings, who had been suffering back pains and spasms for a few days a key tumoral symptom was hospitalized and was to undergo emergency surgery that afternoon to have the tumor removed.

LA Soccer Coach Ethan King remarked Monday that the test results haven't come back yet as to whether or not the tumor was cancerous and that the team and school were supporting him, noting that several players and students went to Vanderbilt Hospital to visit Cummings and his family Sunday.

"It was good for them to see him in good spirits," King said.

"They could tell he felt better. A week or so before (the surgery), he was just constantly grimacing in pain and everything, but he was in far less pain after the surgery."

Despite the inherent heaviness of the situation, the boys pressed on and won their contest against DeKalb's Tigers 4-1, remaining undefeated for the length of the season in district play and taking the first seed in the upcoming district tournament.

Goal scoring for the Cats was handled by the two goals of Jacob Pennington and the single goals of Westley Burnett and Jonathan McGill.

"Jacob scored one of his goals on an assist from Wes Burnett, and Jonathan McGill got his on a corner kick," said the coach.

"We gave up a goal late in the game, and it was getting rough towards the end of the game, but all in all, it was a pretty good game under the circumstances."

Speaking about the flurry of yellow cards handed out by the referees during the contest, the coach said, "It was a physical game, but you know, when you're playing for first place, you kind of anticipate there's going to be a fair amount of competitiveness."

Competitiveness on both sides, as a matter of fact, with the Tigers getting their share of opportunites, including a couple of breakaways.

"They had one or two breakaways, and they've got a couple of really skilled players.

"Sometimes, we're just overeager instead of being patient with our defense trying to take the ball from them instead of letting them make the mistake. There's lots of times where we wind up making bad fouls and getting cards, so we still have to be patient."

Commenting on the game against York Institute scheduled for Tuesday, April 4, King said, "It won't really count towards our district record. They've re-done the district where you only have to play each other once and a second game is just for sport, and we wanted to play them twice. They actually played us closer than any other district opponent this year."

After the York game, the team is scheduled to compete in the district tournament from May 10-14, with a bye in the first round due to their number one-seeded status. Tournament brackets, however, will not be formulated until Friday, May 7.


Lady Cats defeat Lady Bees

Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
Jessica McDonald slides home in last Thursday's LA win over Upperman's Lady Bees.

With no seniors on the field, the Livingston Academy Lady Wildcats pounded the Upperman Lady Bees 14-2 in a five-inning onslaught Thursday, April 29.

LA Softball Coach Mike Johnson said, "We loaded the bases the first inning, and didn't score. Then we scored in every inning after that."

The Lady Cats scored 14 runs on 14 hits, with pitcher Ashley Howard helping her own cause by going 3 for 3 and scoring 3 runs.

Lisa Reeder went 2 for 2 and scored 3 runs, Stasha Babb went 2 for 3 and scored 2 runs, and Jessica McDonald and Ashley McDonald scored 2 runs each.

The Lady Cats not only hit well, they showed patience at the plate as well, walking 11 times.

On the mound, Ashley Howard posted her 9th win of the season. She gave up 2 runs on 4 hits, and allowed no walks.

"It was a game we really needed to win," Coach Johnson said. "We have three more district games, and if we win just one of them, we are guaranteed 3rd place in the district."

The Lady Wildcats overall record moved to 17-14 with the win. The team's District 7-AA record stood at 6-3 before the game against Jackson County on Tuesday, May 4, the last home game for LA. The Lady Cats will travel to Smithville on Thursday, May 6 to play a double-header against DeKalb County.

"There is a slight possibility, if we could win both games against DeKalb and they lost to Smith County tomorrow night, we could get 2nd place," Coach Johnson said on Monday.

"As long as we win against Jackson County, we're guaranteed 3rd."

The District 7-AA Tournament will be held May 10-14 at Jackson County High School.

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