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Wicked hop leads to 1-0 loss for Trailblazers

Johnny Wilson • Updated Apr 16, 2019 at 10:53 PM

BRISTOL—Hitter-friendly Tod Houston Field became the site of a rare pitcher's duel on Tuesday, when visiting Daniel Boone sought a coveted home-and-home baseball sweep of Big Seven Conference rival Tennessee High.

Taking advantage of a wicked hop on a decisive outfield throw to the plate, Tennessee High was able to claim a 1-0 victory over the Trailblazers.

Just 24 hours earlier, Boone had beaten the Vikings by an 8-6 count.

"This was a heavyweight battle for sure," said Boone coach Rob Hoover. "To go head-to-head against the No.5 team in the state with their No.1 (pitcher) and our No.1 ... It was a championship atmosphere, a championship-type game.

"It's good to be in a battle like this just two weeks before the tournament."

Both teams managed to collect just two base hits in the game, off winning pitcher Davis Hall and losing pitcher Cade Elliott.

THE WINNING PLAY

Tennessee High (20-6, 7-3) scored the go-ahead run in the bottom of the sixth inning, on a bang-bang play off the bat of Jarrett Powell.

With the bases loaded and one out, Powell ripped a sinking liner to center on a 3-2 delivery from Elliott, a ball in which hard-charging center fielder Brody Goodman was able to dial in and spear about knee-high.

There would be a play at the plate, as athletic Ryan Gibson gambled and raced home, hoping that Boone (14-10, 7-5) couldn't make the perfect relay and tag at the dish. And as it turned out, the Vikings were right.

Goodman's on-the-money peg was well ahead of Gibson, but it landed some six or eight feet in front of home plate and took a nasty hop just over the extended mitt of catcher Logan Rivers, allowing the game's only run to score.

Gibson had singled, ahead of successive walks to Cole Presson and Jake Orr.

"We did everything we needed to do on that play," Hoover said. "A great jump in center field leads to the catch and then the great throw home.

"It just kind of skipped on him (Rivers), took off on him a little more than he expected. That's a hard play for a catcher, a really hard play."

PITCHERS LOCKED UP

Gibson's tally made a winner out of Davis Hall, a 6-foot-2 senior right-hander who went the distance and struck out eight while walking two.

Hall got the better of Elliott, a left-handed junior who worked 6 2/3 innings — 113 pitches — with eight strikeouts, five walks and three hit-batsmen.

"They got Cade's pitch count up in the early innings and it may have affected him, I think, later in the game," Hoover allowed. "Early in the game he had to work awfully hard to keep zeroes up on that scoreboard."

———

TENNESSEE HIGH 1, DANIEL BOONE 0

Daniel Boone (14-10, 7-5) - 000 000 0 - 0 2 0

Tennessee High (20-6, 7-3) - 000 001 x - 1 2 0

Elliott and Rivers; Hall and Orr. W - Hall. L - Elliott. HR - none.

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