Russellville romps Muscle Shoals in five innings to clinch Area title
Jason Cannon, Franklin County Times
What had the makings of the game of the century turned out to be a little less dramatic yesterday with Russellville smashing Muscle Shoals 13-3 to clinch the Area 16 Championship.
Russellville (36-6, 6-0) needed to win only one game of yesterday's double-header to clinch the title and they decided they didn't want to prolong it.
"I feel great," Russellville Coach David Ward said. "We swung the bats well and Preston (Beasley) was pitching well. It just all came together."
Muscle Shoals came out of the dugout with a bang, taking a 1-0 lead in the first off a homerun by Brent Bradford.
Russellville bounced back strong in the bottom of the first. Caleb Mitchell led the bottom of the inning off with a walk and proceeded to steal every base around the diamond until he reached home.
Jake Ward, who reached base on a walk, was driven home on a two run homer off the bat of Seth Ferguson, giving the Golden Tigers a 3-1 lead in the first.
The second inning was even more fruitful for Russellville.
A single by Mitchell brought home Jacob Daniel and Evan Ferguson scored on a walk. Mitchell and Patrick Hines scored on a two RBI hit by Corey Flannigan to give the Golden Tigers a 7-1 lead.
Russellville put four more on the board in the third, two of which came off a two run homerun by Daniel.
Not to be out done, Evan Ferguson, the next batter in the line up launched a solo shot to give Russellville a 10-1 edge and single by Flannigan scored Mitchell to put Russellville up by 10.
With the smell of a mercy rule loss in the air, Muscle Shoals put two runs on the board in the top of the fourth but in the bottom of the fifth, the Golden Tigers were able to put them away for good. Hines scored on a fly out by Flannigan to put the Tigers up by nine and Seth Ferguson ripped the game winning RBI single to give Russellville the 13-3 win.
Preston Beasley got the win, pitching all five innings, giving up five hits, two walks and striking out five.