ERWIN—Johnson County hung with the “Big Dog” for five innings, but the sixth frame would do them in. Unicoi County homered twice in that frame to break open a tight contest and win 6-1 in the season opener for both teams.
It was a battle for the first five innings as neither team could muster much offense. The Blue Devils scored a run in the first inning and added another one in the fifth to go up 2-0.
That was until they broke it open with the two homers in the sixth.
Head coach Greg Reece like the way his team played despite not getting to any preseason games because of the weather.
“We’ve got rained out every time we tried to play any preseason games o it was our first time on the field under this type of setting,” said Reece. “I thought we competed really well and it will get even better when we start hitting the ball up and down our lineup. We just need to get a few games under our belt. Unfortunately, we opened the season against two of the better teams in our conference with Unicoi and Sullivan East.”
Johnson County’s best opportunity to score came in the fifth inning when they loaded the bases. Singles by Maddie Edington and Abby Cornett followed a walk to Alexis Hendley with one out, but a strikeout and groundout would end the inning.
Blue Devils put
it out of reach
Back-to-back home runs from Allee Griffith and Sam Chavez would push their lead up to 4-0 to start the sixth. Singles by Ashton Vance, Kiley Bennett, and Hollie Hawkins would factor in their final two runs.
The Lady Longhorns were able to avoid being shut out by pushing across a run in their final at-bat. Abby Cornett singled for her third hit of the game and would later score on a throwing error.
Cornett led the hitting with a perfect 3-for-3 day at the plate. Natalie Winters, Hannah Brooks, Lindsey Wills, Edington, and Diamond Dibble provided one hit apiece.
Brooks pitched five strong innings for the Horns before tiring in the sixth.
Griffith, Vance, and Hawkins had two hits apiece for Unicoi County. Griffith went the distance on the mound to earn the win.
Johnson Co. 0000001 -1
Unicoi Co. 100014x -6
Griffith and Hawkins. Brooks and Miller.
HR—UC 2 (Griffith, Chavez)