Cats win some, lose some in first week of season
Lady Cats open season with three wins, loss
LA Tennis Teams bring experience to 2005
Cats win some, lose
some in first week of season
Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
LA junior Tyler Thrasher started the Monday, March 14 game against
Monterey, which was ultimately won by the visiting Wildcats instead
of the Livingston Academy variety.
By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN Sports
To err is human, but errors in baseball are unforgiving. Errors
cost the Livingston Academy Wildcats greatly in their first outing,
a 4-5 home loss to Monterey on Monday, March 14.
LA Coach Pat Swallows said, "I don't want to take anything
away from Monterey. They did a good job. They beat us. They deserve
everything they got.
"Coach (John) Looper certainly does a great job up there and
did a better job of getting his guys prepared to play on the first
day than I did, because we just did not play the way we are capable
"We made too many mistakes. We got tight when we got behind
and started pressing, and just didn't do the little things that
"When you give up 4 hits and strike out 10, you should win."
Second base alone cost LA three runners in the game, two were
thrown out at second and one was picked off at the number 2 bag.
Tyler Thrasher started the game, but ended up with a "no decision".
"Thrasher pitched a good enough game to win," Coach Swallows
said. "He only gave up 3 hits, and struck out 6.
"But we made 6 errors and left 6 on. We just don't win when
we play like that."
Shane Livingston ended up as the losing pitcher.
"He came in and threw an inning and struck out the side,"
Coach Swallows said. "In the top of the seventh, he gave up
a bang-bang single on a ground ball to short. The kid had good speed
and beat it out. Then we made an error, again. So that put runners
on first and second.
"So, I brought Cody in. He walked the first batter to load
the bases. Then he struck out a batter. Then we made another error
that allowed them to score the go-ahead run. We were tied 4-4 and
they went up 5-4 right then."
Offensively, Tyler Thrasher went 1 for 3 with a run batted in,
Cody Sells went 2 for 2 with an RBI, John Ward went 1 for 3 with
an RBI, and Andrew Dixon got a hit.
Dixon scored a run, Brian Colson scored a run, and pinch-runner
Joe Reynolds scored twice.
The following day's scheduled game at Carthage against Smith County
was rained out and rescheduled for Wednesday, March 30.
The Wildcats travelled to Lebanon on Thursday, March 17 to play
in the Friendship Christian Tournament. The host team was the first
opponent for LA.
"We played Friendship, which is probably the best team we
have played in all the pre-season and so far," Coach Swallows
said. "They are a very, very good solid team. We beat them
Cody Sells got the win on the mound for Livingston.
"Cody did a great job," Coach Swallows said. "He
went the whole 7 innings, gave up 5 runs on 6 hits, struck out 12."
The Cats had 8 hits in the win. Tyler Thrasher went 2 for 4 with
2 runs batted in, John Ward went 2 for 3 with 2 RBI, Chris Nelson
went 1 for 2 with an RBI, and Jon Maynard went 1 for 1 with an RBI.
"The key to the whole game was that we did not make one error,"
Coach Swallows said. "When you do that against a solid club,
a very good club, you've got a chance to win. That was a big, big
boost for us. That showed them that we can play against some quality
people if they will just cut the mistakes out and not do those silly
The second game of the evening for LA was erased by darkness when
the lights went out. After waiting in the freezing cold for an hour
and 45 minutes, the game against Gallatin, which had just entered
the fourth inning, was called "no contest".
The next night, the Cats took on the Eagles of Ezell-Harding Christian
School and won 4-2.
"Shane Livingston threw a great game against Ezell,"
Coach Swallows said.
In 6 and 2/3 innings, he gave up 2 runs on 6 hits and struck out
"Even though we didn't play the best defensive game - we made
3 errors - we still got some big hits when we needed to," Coach
Swallows said. "Tyler Thrasher hit a 3-run bomb in the third,
and Jon Maynard was 1 for 2 with another RBI."
Chris Nelson and Cody Sells also had a hit each for LA.
"Ezell-Harding is a solid club, a private school in Nashville.
So, we were real happy about the way we played against them."
The next day, Livingston Academy was matched against Centennial
High School, a Class AAA school in Franklin.
"We played well for three innings," Coach Swallows said.
Then the wheels fell off as a walk, an error, then back-to-back
doubles off Tyler Thrasher made a 2-1 Cougars lead grow to 6-1.
Coach Swallows decided the team needed freshening up, so he put
in the "Not Ready for Prime Time" players to get some
"We had played four games already in the tournament,"
Coach Swallows said. "I wanted to get some of the younger guys
LA gave up 10 runs in the fifth inning en route to a 2-16 loss.
Tyler Thrasher hit another home run in the game as he went 2 for
2. "His bat is hot right now," Coach Swallows said.
Andrew Dixon, Cody Sells, and Chris Nelson each singled in the
game, and in the bottom of the fifth, new entries Mark Barnett,
Joe Reynolds, and Josh Coffman all had singles.
"We got 3 hits in the fifth and scored a run with the young
guys," Coach Swallows said, finding a bright spot in a dark
After a scheduled game at White County on Tuesday, March 22, Livingston
Academy will open District 7-AA play at home against the powerful
Upperman Bees on Thursday, March 24. The Wildcats will then play
in the Brentwood Academy Tournament on Friday and Saturday, March
25 and 26.
Livingston Academy will host Cannon County in another district
game on Monday, March 28, then travel to Lafayette to play Macon
County the following day.
"We've got to get our bats going a little bit, cut down on
the critical mistakes," Coach Swallows said. "Our pitching's
done well enough to be 4-0, but we're not."
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Lady Cats open season
with three wins, loss
Dewain E. Peek/OCN staff
LA catcher Stasha Babb drives in a run in the first game of a
double-header against Monterey on Thursday, March 17. Livingston
won the game 2-1, and Babb went 3 for 3.
By DEWAIN E. PEEK, OCN Sports
Livingston Academy's Lady Wildcats opened the season with a 13-3
win over Clay County on Monday, March 14 with an unusual pitching
Coach Mike Johnson did not use senior starting pitchers Ashley
Howard or Tara Taylor, but instead relied on a senior new to the
starting role and a sophomore new to the LA mound.
Everyday catcher Stasha Babb left the "tools of ignorance"
(catcher's gear) for another to wear while she faced the Lady Bulldogs
from the middle of the infield.
"That was the first time she'd ever pitched in a high school
game, if I recall correctly," Coach Johnson said.
She gave up a single run in 3 innings pitched.
"Then I put Katie Vaughn in the game," Coach Johnson
said. "It was her first time pitching in a varsity game."
She pitched 2 innings and gave up 2 runs.
Livingston's 13 runs were scored by 9 different players.
"A lot of walks were given up by that team," Coach Johnson
said. "Their main pitcher got sick or something right before
the game, so they put someone else in, and she didn't do so well.
"She walked a bunch of players and hit two or three of them.
So, we got on base a lot. They had a lot of wild pitches.
"We got around the bases pretty easily. We could have made
it a lot worse than what it was.
"I put a lot of younger players in and let them get a little
experience. It was a pretty easy win for us."
Lisa Reeder and Ashley McDonald each hit triples in the game for
LA. Andrea Borden hit a single, Megan Harris had a double, and Liz
Hall was the only player with 2 hits, both singles.
"Everybody else walked or got hit by a pitch. Four players
got hit by pitches. She was pretty wild," Coach Johnson said
of Clay County's replacement pitcher.
The next day LA hosted Red Boiling Springs and won 18-7.
Ashley Howard pitched all 5 innings of the 10 run-rule shortened
game. Howard gave up 7 runs and 9 hits, and struck out 6 batters.
"She pitched pretty well in that game," Coach Johnson
said. "We had a few fielding mistakes that cost us a few more
runs than it should have. RBS hit the ball a little bit, but not
enough to score 7 runs. We made a couple of really bad fielding
errors that let them score when they shouldn't have."
The Lady Cats capitalized on 14 walks in the game.
"They had two different pitchers, and the one that pitched
the most was a little bit wild," Coach Johnson said. "She
gave up a lot of walks."
Jessica McDonald had 3 hits in the game for LA, including 2 doubles.
Ashley Howard had 2 hits, including a double, Andrea Borden hit
a double, and Brittany McDonald hit 2 singles.
"We hit the ball pretty well against that team, when the ball
was thrown down the middle," Coach Johnson said. "There
were a lot of walks and we got on base a lot again in this game,
and moved around the bases when they had wild pitches, and scored
pretty much at will. In three different innings we scored 5 or more
The Lady Cats played better than expected against RBS.
"We had played them earlier in a scrimmage game and beat them
2-1, so we improved a little bit," Coach Johnson said.
Livingston Academy hosted a double-header against Monterey on Thursday,
Tara Taylor pitched the opener and gave up a single run on 8 hits
as LA won 2-1.
"Taylor pitched well," Coach Johnson said. "It was
her first start of the season."
Stasha Babb went 3 for 3 and drove in a run. Tara Taylor and Ashley
Howard scored the Lady Cats' runs.
"We played okay. It was good at times, then we made a couple
of mistakes," Coach Johnson said. "I guess it was just
early-season jitters or we just haven't got the rust off yet. That
was what gave them the one run, fielding mistakes.
"Monterey is a pretty good team. They are probably the best
team in Class 7-A this year. They've got a good pitcher, who was
there last year. We played against her last year, and she was good
then, and she's even better this year.
"She wasn't a dominating pitcher, but she could throw strikes.
We didn't hit as well as I thought we could.
"But we won that game, so I can't complain. I would have liked
to have won it by more than a single run scored in the last inning."
The second game of the double-header saw a severe reversal of fortune
for Livingston's Lady Wildcats as the visiting Monterey Lady Wildcats
Coach Johnson used three pitchers in the losing effort.
Ashley Howard started the game for LA, and pitched two innings.
Stasha Babb was brought in and pitched another couple of innings
before sophomore Kaylie Wilson was brought in to finish the game.
"It was Kaylie's first appearance with the team," Coach
"We gave up 11 runs and a lot of hits, 16 hits total. For
some reason, they just came alive against our other pitchers. They
just started pounding the ball against us. They were hitting it
everywhere, hitting it where we weren't. We just couldn't do anything
against them in that game.
"We only scored 3 runs. We just couldn't hit the ball at all
in that game for some reason. We didn't have any hard hits, just
dinky rollers or little pop-ups to the first or second baseman.
We just couldn't get around on the ball until the last two innings.
"The last two hits of the game were just shots to the outfield.
Where that was at the first couple of innings I don't know. We just
didn't play as well in the second game."
Andrea Borden, Brittany McDonald, and Ashley McDonald each scored
a run for LA.
Ashley Howard had 2 hits, Andrea Borden had 2 hits, including a
double, and Lisa Reeder had 2 hits, including a double.
"They've got a good coach," Johnson said of the Monterey
"They did some things that we haven't seen before this year,
trying to run the bases differently and trying to get us to throw
the ball around some. "They did some things differently that
we're going to try to work on ourselves and emulate some of that.
It seemed to mess us up a little bit. It was good aggressive baserunning."
Coach Johnson hopes the Lady Cats can continue winning when they
move into play against Class AA schools this week.
"I'm happy we won three games, but unhappy we lost one, of
course, always unhappy to lose a game. We start district games this
week. We've got to play better than we've played to be able to beat
teams like York and Smith County."
After travelling to Celina to play Clay County again on Monday,
March 21 and hosting York Institute on Tuesday, March 22, Livingston
Academy will host Smith County on Thursday, March 24.
The Lady Wildcats are scheduled to play in the MTSCA Classic at
Murfreesboro on Friday and Saturday, March 25 and 26, then LA will
host Cannon County on Tuesday, March 29 in another District 7-AA
"I think we are capable of playing better," Coach Johnson
said. "We just have to get together as a team and be a little
more aggressive at the plate and running the bases, and not make
the mistakes in the field like letting the ball go between your
legs, misjudging the ball, or throwing it over the person's head.
"We've made some typical mistakes that all teams make. If
we can correct them, we can play a lot better and win more games.
We can beat the teams in our district if we just play well."
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LA Tennis Teams bring
experience to 2005
Graham Studios photo
Members of the 2005 Livingston Academy Tennis Teams are, kneeling
from left, Andy Sathern, David Johnson, Brad Ledbetter, David McDarby,
Randy Boswell, Jeremiah Jackson, standing, Becca Ramsey, Rhiannon
Voss, Ashley Taylor, Leah Thomas, Brooke Ledbetter, Amber Carmack,
Chelsea Sevier, Danielle Ray, and Lacy Carmack. Not pictured is
By LEAH THOMAS, OCN Sports
The Livingston Academy Girls Tennis Team will start off the 2005
season with five players returning, and a loss of four seniors from
Livingston Academy Tennis Coach Scott Cole said, "It's going
to be difficult because of the leadership lost, but we have enough
experienced players to still be competitive."
The LA girls are seniors Brooke Ledbetter and Amber Carmack, junior
Leah Thomas, sophomores Lacy Carmack and Danielle Ray, and freshmen
Ashley Taylor, Chelsea Sevier, and Rhiannon Voss.
The Livingston Academy Boys Tennis Team will have four players
returning, with the loss of one senior from last year.
Coach Cole said, "For the boys, losing the top player will
hurt, but we still have a pretty balanced team."
The LA boys are senior Dereck Neal, juniors Andy Sathern, David
Johnson, Brad Ledbetter, and David McDarby, and sophomore Randy
After opening the season Monday, March 21 against Cannon County
and hosting DeKalb County on Tuesday, March 22, the Livingston Academy
Tennis Teams will travel to Lafayette to play Macon County today,
Wednesday, March 23, then will return home to play Macon County
again on Monday, March 28.
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