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Elizabethton Cyclones beat Longhorns 15-4

The Longhorns recent winning streak hit a stumbling block last week as Johnson County took on the visiting Elizabethton Cyclones. Elizabethton has proved to be one of the toughest competitors that the Longhorns have faced, relying heavily on a strong, consistent lineup of batters. With thirteen base hits overall, there weren’t many innings where the Cyclones didn’t make gains.
In their first at bat, Elizabethton made some of the most significant advancements, with two doubles that allowed one batter to gain two RBIs only to be followed by the next batter with another. In all, the Cyclones managed to put four runners across home plate, and another on second base, before the Longhorns could finally deliver the third out.
Aside from Elizabethton’s ability to hit the ball, a big part of the problem in this game was trouble from Johnson County’s defense. With a pile of errors, some of the careless mistakes in both the in and out fields left Johnson County’s fans and coaches cringing. “There were seven or eight errors; it was just a nightmare on defense”, said Assistant Coach Nicholas Perkins. “The Elizabethton Cyclones area a very good baseball team, maybe the best baseball team in the Three Rivers Conference. You have to play really well to be competitive with them and we didn’t play well at all today.”
Despite the overall team’s performance, Perkins did have a lot of good to say about some of the particular players “Sophomore Blade Hampton made his first career varsity start at catcher. I thought he played well. I was pleased with his performance. Harley Reece pitched well on relief, but he was on two days rest so we caught a lot of knuckle balls because that’s a pitch that’s easy on his arm. He pitched well and deserved better results,” said Perkins.
Andy Woods kicked off the pitching for Johnson County, only going one inning but throwing out 29 pitches with 17 strikes and one strikeout. After Woods, Reece took over, pitching the remaining five innings. Johnson County was able to keep Elizabethton off the scoreboard for the 2nd and 3rd innings, but then were right back in trouble in the 4th when the Cyclones put up three more runs and nearly managed another. Two of those runs began as the result of Johnson County errors.
On the offensive side, the Longhorns started off very slow, with little advancement in the first four innings. In fact, by the time the fifth inning rolled around, Johnson County was in danger of playing a mercy ruled game, with Elizabethton standing at 0-11 following their fifth turn at bat. Fortunately, Johnson County put up their best effort in the last two innings, gaining two runs in the fifth and two more in the sixth.
For the entire story, pick up a copy of this week's Tomahawk.