Myrtle Summer League Results

Savannah Shirley drives past the North Pontotoc defender in West Union's opening game at Myrtle on Monday. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Savannah Shirley drives past the North Pontotoc defender in West Union’s opening game at Myrtle on Monday. Photo by Dennis Clayton.
Myrtle launched their girls summer league basketball on Monday with three Union County teams seeing early action. Myrtle, Ingomar and West Union hit the hardwood in the afternoon sessions. Games consisted of 15 minute running halves.
Ingomar 29, Myrtle 9
The Lady Falcons relied on their defense to hold the Lady Hawks to only two points in the first half and take a 9-2 lead. Both teams had to overcome numerous mistakes and missed opportunities during the half.
Ingomar began to find the range in the second half, scoring 20 points. Myrtle continued to struggle offensively and could only manage seven points.
Mallory Russell led all scorers with 10 points and Gara Beth Self added six. Ivory Montgomery led Myrtle with seven points.
West Union 24, North Pontotoc 16
The Lady Eagles squared off against North Pontotoc in the next contest and came away with a 24-16 victory.
West Union took the early lead and went into the half up 15-11. Both offenses had issues scoring in the second half, but the Lady Eagles hung on to gain the win.
Gracen Conlee had a game high 10 points to lead the Lady Eagles and Kylie Massengill scored seven. Amelia Merritt had nine points for the Lady Vikings.

Kallie Roberts brings the ball up for the Lady Urchins. Photo by Dennis Clayton. Kallie Roberts brings the ball up for the Lady Urchins. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Amber Cook passes to a Myrtle teammate in the corner. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Amber Cook passes to a Myrtle teammate in the corner. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Bulldogs drop doubleheader to Tigers

Artavious Nugent follows through on his two-run homer in the fourth inning. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Artavious Nugent follows through on his two-run homer in the fourth inning. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


Bulldogs drop pair in baseball doubleheader
BY DENNIS CLAYTON
RIPLEY – New Albany’s Bulldogs were their own worst enemy in Tuesday’s opening game of doubleheader action of summer baseball. Ripley won 11-2 and the Tigers also took the nightcap 5-3.
Ripley took advantage of two big innings to score eight of their 11 runs, plating three in the second and five in the fourth. Walks and errors kept both innings alive for the Tigers as they sent nine batters up in the second and 10 in the fourth.
New Albany closed the score to 3-2 in the top of the fourth as Austin Gafford’s grounder went through under the shortstop’s glove to get the leadoff man on. Eli Jackson’s sacrifice bunt moved Gafford to second. Sam McMillin was called out on an extremely close play at first to give the Bulldogs two outs. Artavious Nugent hit a two-run homer over the left-center fence to get the Bulldogs within a run.
The Tigers put the game out of reach with their five runs in the fourth and added three insurance runs to go up 11-2.
The Bulldogs managed two runs on four hits while committing seven costly errors. New Albany’s pitchers only surrendered seven hits, but seven walks and three hit batters gave the Tigers a host of baserunners during the contest.
The Bulldog defense committed seven errors which also resulted in keeping the Tiger’s scoring opportunities alive.
Austin Gafford drives his single into left. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Austin Gafford drives his single into left. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


Sam McMillin takes a pitch through the right side of the infield. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Sam McMillin takes a pitch through the right side of the infield. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Lady Urchins sweep Wheeler

Sallie Pannell slides under the tag to score a run in the East Union first. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Sallie Pannell slides under the tag to score a run in the East Union first. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


BY DENNIS CLAYTON
ELLISTOWN – East Union’s Lady Urchins got the sweep over Wheeler on Thursday, taking game one 10-2 and the nightcap 13-7.
In game one, Savannah Greer went five innings en route to the win. Greer surrendered two runs in the first and then blanked the Lady Eagles over the final four innings.
The Lady Urchins got a big blast from Emily Bruce in the second inning as her drive down the right field line resulted in an inside-the-park solo home run and give East Union a 5-2 lead.
Sallie Pannell’s two RBI double in the bottom of the first had earlier given the Lady Urchins the lead after Wheeler had jumped out to the early 2-0 advantage. East Union plated four runs total in the first.
The Lady Urchins batted around in the bottom of the third, scoring five runs to safely put the game ut of reach and resulting in the 10-2 final.
Rebecca Sheffield put on a hitting clinic in game two, going three for three with an inside-the-park three runs homer plus two triples. Sheffield drove in two runs with her second triple of the game in the Lady Urchins second. Sheffield had five RBIs in game two and scored three runs.
East Union sent 12 batters to the plate in the first, scoring six runs on six hits.
The Lady Urchins added one run in the second, four in the third and two in the fourth to reach their 13-7 final.
Kensie Roberts took the win, going three innings and allowing five runs.
Savannah Greer fires the pitch to the plate during the first inning of game one against Wheeler. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Savannah Greer fires the pitch to the plate during the first inning of game one against Wheeler. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


Rebecca Sheffield drove in five runs on three hits and scored three in game two. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Rebecca Sheffield drove in five runs on three hits and scored three in game two. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Roaton’s complete game for Urchins evens series

Witt Roaton tossed a complete for the Urchins on Thursday to even their series 1-1. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Witt Roaton tossed a complete game for the Urchins on Thursday to even their series 1-1. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

BY DENNIS CLAYTON ELLISTOWN – Witt Roaton tossed a five-hitter while striking out 10 to lead East Union to their 5-4 win over East Webster in game two of their 2A baseball series. The win evened the series at 1-1. “I felt pretty good and I think all the pitches were working at some point,” Roaton said. “I just had to find my release point and just threw the ball up to the plate and let my defense work. I just gave it my all, it was my nanny’s birthday and I gave her a birthday present.” The Urchins wasted little time in pushing a run across the plate, Zane Wilkinson led off the Urchin first with a double and later scored on Thomas Moore’s sacrifice bunt. The Urchins failed to do further damage as they left the bases loaded in the frame. “Getting that early lead gave us momentum and just helped getting the guys pumped up in the dugout,” Moore said. “It was an awesome win.” East Union threatened again in the second following Ty McDonald’s walk and Moore’s single, but the inning ended on an extremely close play at first that could have gone either way to end the threat. East Webster made the best of a walk and three singles to score three runs in the top of the third to take a 3-1 lead. The Urchins came back in their half of the third to regain the lead as Lane Plunk and Drew Edwards opened the inning with back-to-back singles. Jacob Raines’ sacrifice bunt scored Plunk. Ty McDonald’s RBI single plated Edwards. Wilkinson drove in the final run with his single that scored Josh Basil to give East Union the 4-3 lead. East Webster scored their final run of the game in the fourth as they drove in a run with a sacrifice bunt to tie the game 4-4. The Wolverines picked up a couple of singles to get runners in scoring position in the inning. It would be the last hits they would get off Roaton for the rest of the night. East Union answered in the bottom of the fourth as Plunk crushed a triple with one out and was driven in on Edwards’ sacrifice fly to give the Urchins the 5-4 lead. “I just attacked it, being aggressive,” Plunk said of his night at the plate. When asked about the difference between games one and two Plunk said “We fielded the ball much better tonight, we were more calm, no jitters. We just kept fighting and fighting all night.” Plunk reached base three times with a triple, single and once reaching on an error. Wilkinson had multiple hits too, a double and single. “It all goes back to Witt’s night,” East Union coach Chris Basil said. “He did what he had to do, he had a great game tonight. We’ve been looking for that and he did a tremendous job and I’m awful proud of him, he got that big win and did what he had to do for us to be successful. I thought we did a tremendous job tonight of stealing some bases, taking some bases and hitting and running. Credit to our guys, they just all did a tremendous job tonight.” Looking to Friday’s game, Basil said the Urchins feel that they have more pitching than East Webster. “It’s just going to come down to playing the game,” Basil said. “You’ve just got to throw the ball over the plate and make the routine plays, move runner up when you’ve got to move them up.” Game three will be at East Webster on Friday at 6:00 with the winner advancing to the North State Championship next week.

Zane Wilkinson leads off the East Union first with his double. Wilkinson later scored the first Urchin run. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Zane Wilkinson leads off the East Union first with his double. Wilkinson later scored the first Urchin run. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Falcons and Urchins begin round three of playoffs

Cade Bell leads East Union in batting with a .432 average and 29 RBIs. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Cade Bell leads East Union in batting with a .432 average and 29 RBIs. Photo by Dennis Clayton.


BY DENNIS CLAYTON
East Union and Ingomar are the lone survivors of the original 10 Union County playoff teams in baseball and softball. Both teams begin their best of three series tonight in baseball.
Ingomar (21-6) will host Hamilton (10-11) at 7:00 tonight.
Matt Browning leads the Falcon pitching staff with his 7-1 record over 51.1 innings. Browning boasts a 1.91 ERA with 17 walks and 63 strikeouts.
Kelton Hall leads the team in batting with a .380 average with five home runs and 36 RBIs. Joseph Broom is next in production at the plate with .371 batting average and 24 RBIs and one home run.
East Union (15-15) will travel to East Webster (24-3) for their game one series opener today at 6:00.
The Urchins feature starter Witt Roaton as their ace pitcher. Roaton is 4-4 with a 3.34 ERA over 50.1 innings. He has 65 strikeouts and issued 31 walks on the year.
East Union is led by eighth-grader Cade Bell at the plate. Bell is batting .432 with 29 RBIs, one home run and nine doubles.
Leadoff batter Zane Wilkinson is also a threat to reach base with his .408 average and nine doubles. Wilkinson leads the Urchins in steals, having successfully stolen 18 of 19 attempts.
The series will shift on Thursday with Ingomar traveling to Hamilton and East Union will host East Webster. First pitch is scheduled for 6:00 on Thursday.

Urchins win game three behind Wilkinson’s performance 

  Urchins pose for a team photo after winning the series against Strayhorn 2-1.

East Union rode the arm of Joel Wilkinson and the bat of Lane Plunk to win game three of their series against Strayhorn 8-2 on Friday and take the series 2-1.

Wilkinson was masterful on the mound, scattering six hits and limiting Strayhorn’s offensive hitting machine, Pedro Rubio to a solo home run. Wilkinson struck out three on the day.

Plunk was 2 for 4 with four RBIs and a double. The senior drove in the first Urchin run in the top of the first and also had a hand in all three East Union runs in the third, driving in two with his double and scoring the third run on Drew Edward’s RBI single.

East Union advances to the third round of 2A playoffs and will face the winner of the Baldwyn/East Webster series.

Hawks clip Eagles in extra innings

Zack Perkins crushes a solo homer on an 0-2 pitch in the Myrtle fifth. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

Zack Perkins crushes a solo homer on an 0-2 pitch in the Myrtle fifth. Photo by Dennis Clayton.

BY DENNIS CLAYTON
MYRTLE – Myrtle and West Union needed eight innings to settle their Division 2-1A baseball opener and the Hawks were able to scratch out a 5-4 win. With bases loaded, the Hawks scored on a hit by pitch to take the narrow win.
“It was a big win, it’s one of those that seemed like a marathon game,” Myrtle coach Robert Gordon said. “I know it just went eight innings, but I was thinking, man I don’t know how much more I can take. I was glad we scratched that run across at the end, but I credit their pitcher, he’s good, he’s really good.
Myrtle scored in the bottom of the first as leadoff batter Lane Bishop doubled and later scored to put the Hawks up 1-0. Dillon Kennon extended the Hawks’ lead to 2-0 in the second as he got the leadoff walk and scored.
West Union came back in the third to take a 3-2 lead as catcher Luke Willard reached on an error. Riley Bogue came on to as a courtesy runner. Cole Phillips reached and Andrew Childers was hit by pitch to load the bases. John Austin Taylor drove in one run and two more scored on miscues by the Hawks.
Myrtle came right back in the bottom of the inning to tie as Brandon Perkins led off with a single and was driven in on Jacob Kent’s RBI double.
Zach Perkins broke the tie in the bottom of the fifth as he ripped a home run over the left field fence. Perkins was 0-2 in the count when he launched his shot to left to put the Hawks up 4-3.
The Eagles tied the score at 4-4 in the top of the sixth as John Austin Taylor doubled and later scored on Hayden Basil’s RBI single.
Both team threatened in the seventh inning but two plays at the play left the score deadlocked. In the Eagle seventh, a bunt attempt to push across the lead run failed as pitcher Brandon tagged out the runner trying to score from third. Myrtle got the leadoff batter on in their half of the inning and attempted to score him from second on Dillon Kennon’s single, but Eagle centerfielder Cole Phillips threw out the lead runner at the plate.
West Union threatened again in the eight after getting runners aboard at second and third with one out, but Brandon shut down the Eagle threat with back-to-back strikeouts.
Bishop singled and reached with one out and eventually wound up at third with still only one out. West Union opted to load the bases to set up the force at any base, but Myrtle took the win as Zach Perkins was hit to drive in the winning run.
“It was a great game,” Gordon said. “It was a great game to be a part of win or loss, I told my kids that if we had lost, I would have still been proud of them.”
Both starters Brandon for Myrtle and Taylor for West Union went the distance in the contest and gave their teams a quality outing and opportunity to win.
“When we started the game, I felt like we were tight, but I really feel like it means something to this group and it’s the first real big game they’ve played and once we got over that hump, we really battled,” West Union coach Ashley Russell said. “Both teams battled and that turned into one of the better baseball games that I’ve seen in a while. I was proud of my guys, we had a number of guys that made plays. John Austin Taylor battled for us and really has become a good leader and did everything he could to win, I put him in a bad situation there at the end of the game, that one’s on me.