By Chris Parsons / Staff Writer
PRESTONSBURG — After a pair of rainy-day washouts Sunday and Monday, the Knox County Little League All Stars continued their quest for a state title with a 10-0 win over Morgan County Tuesday.
The win guarantees Knox County a spot in the state semifinals Thursday. The only thing to be decided by today's game is whether they go in as a No. 1 or No. 2 seed.
Caleb Powers, Thomas Jackson and Payton Payne combined for a four-inning no-hitter, allowing just one baserunner on a Knox County error. Jackson led the way with five strikeouts, while Payne added three and Powers struck out two batters.
After the win, Knox County coach Scott Payne credited his players for the lopsided win, but said he cautioned them not to let up just because they've secured a semifinal berth.
“I told the kids after the game that we can't afford to let up and go into the semifinals on a down note,” Payne said. “It's important that we continue to play well and carry as much momentum as we can with us as we move on.
“This was a good win for us overall against a team we really didn't know anything about,” he added. “We combined to hold them to no hits, so any time you do that in a state tournament game, it’s a pretty good accomplishment.”
Offensively it was Payne and Tucker Holland leading the way for Knox County. Holland was 2-for-3 with a double, a triple and four RBIs. Payne was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored, while Bailey Lundy added a pair of hits and an RBI in the win.
Knox County pounded out four hits in the bottom of the second, which led to a 4-0 lead by the time the inning was over.
All was quiet until Holland stretched the lead with a three-run triple in the bottom of the fourth to put his team on top 8-0. Payne singled to make the score 9-0 and Lundy closed out the game with an RBI single to put the mercy rule in effect.
With his team playing well, Payne is still cautious with how he approaches each game. He said the overall level of play is a lot better than he has seen in recent years at the state tournament level.
“I knew coming in that playing at the 12-year-old level would be a whole different game,” Payne said. “At the 11-year-old level you have a lot of the better kids playing for the 12s, so that makes the 12-year-old teams that much better.
“There's been some really good baseball teams up here this week and it's going to be a battle whoever we face moving forward,” he added. “We've got good kids too though and we'll have them ready to play when the time comes.”
Knox County will be back in action today when they face Morehead at 9 p.m.
Knox County cruises to an easy 10-0 win
By Chris Parsons / Staff Writer
- Local Sports
The Williamsburg Yellow Jackets are partying like it's 1987! That was the last time the Jackets won a game in the 13th Region Tournament, and they ended the 27-year drought with a 47-44 win over the heavily-favored Knox Central Panthers on Thursday night.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'Em
When it comes to picking region tournament games, it’s not an easy task to say the least. This is the most parity that I’ve ever seen in the 13th Region Boys and Girls Tournaments.
If Clay County’s play during the first game of the 13th Region Tournament is any indication of things to come, Robert Marcum’s squad could be well on its way of capturing their second straight 13th Region championship.
The Way it is
Since I’m picking Corbin to pull off the upset against Jackson County today, I figured I’d give my top five upsets dating back to 2005-06 when the 13th realigned and welcomed both North and South Laurel high schools to the mix.
Tony Pietrowski’s Corbin Redhounds have been favored during the past two first round 13th Region match-ups, and have been upset both times. Corbin is hoping things might change a bit this time around.
Barbourville will have hands full against Bell County today
Dinky Phipps’ Barbourville Tigers are looking for their first 13th Region Tournament win dating back to 2006’s tournament when they defeated Clay County in the regional semifinals.
Like It or Not
There’s an elephant in the room at this year’s 13th Region Tournament, and really in basketball in general, and I guess I’ll be the first one to point it out (publicly with my name attached to it).
Chris' Daily Region Pick'Em
With the first three days of opening round games in the books, I can honestly say I'm not surprised that I'm 4-2 overall when it comes to my pick'ems record.
You can never count out the Clay County Lady Tigers when it comes to the 13th Region Tournament.
Les Dixon's Daily Region Pick'em
After going just .500 during the girls games, things are going to get even tougher when it comes to picking the 13th Region Boys Tournament games.
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