Newton County Academy drops playoff opener
By By Ryan Satcher / staff writer
April 24, 2002
DECATUR Newton County Academy lost the first game of its MPSA Class A first-round playoff series 14-1 to University Christian School Tuesday afternoon, as the Flames pounded out 10 runs in the top of the fifth inning.
The Flames took advantage of nine Newton errors to take the first game of the best-of-three series. The teams will face each other again at University Christian on Thursday at 4:30 p.m. If necessary, the third game in the series will immediately follow the completion of the day's first game.
Jeremy Phillips allowed only one run in five innings of work to pick up the win for the visiting Flames.
The Generals took an early lead over the visitors in the bottom of the first. Wil Bean got a two-out single to reach base and Chris Walker followed with a double to give Newton runners at second and third. Blake Hederick came through with a clutch single to bring in the first run of the game and give the Generals a 1-0 lead. Walker was thrown out trying to score to end the inning.
The Flames used bunts to come back in the third and score four runs. Josh Buckner started off the inning with a single and moved over on a wild pitch. Daniel Wheat reached base on an error to give UCS runners on first and third. Trey Butts followed with a bunt single to tie the score up 1-1. Ross Myers also reached on a bunt hit to load the bases.
Coty Smith put down a squeeze bunt to knock in Wheat. Smith was thrown out at first but Butts hustled all the way from second and beat the throw back home to give the Flames a 3-1 lead. Jase Conway knocked in Myers with a single to make the score 4-1.
UCS put the game away in the long fifth inning. The visitors sent 15 batters to the plate in the inning and took advantage of eight Newton errors to score 10 runs. Butts reached on an error to start the inning. Myers singled and the moved all the way to third on an error in the outfield. Butts scored to make the score 5-1. Smith followed with an RBI double. Conway reached second on a throwing error that allowed Smith to score to make the score 7-1. Kevin Ward knocked in Conway with a single. The Generals finally got the first out of the inning when Allen Williams ripped a ball right at the right fielder.
Ward moved to second on a steal and third on a wild pitch. Phillips knocked in Ward with a single to make the score 9-1. Buckner followed with a single to give UCS runners and first and second. Butts came through with a single to knock in Phillips and an error in the outfield allowed Buckner to score on the same play and make the score 11-1.
After Myers walked, Smith came through with his second double of the inning to knock in Myers and Butts. Conway singled in Smith to knock in the last run of the inning and make the score 14-1. The Generals finally got out of the inning when a line drive was smashed right at the first baseman for the last out of the inning.
Newton County Academy was unable to score four runs in the bottom of the fifth and lost by the 10-run rule.
The Generals still have a chance to take two straight games from the Flames to win the series.