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For 4 1/3 innings on Monday, the Washington County Commander baseball team (3-7, 0-1) was in complete control. They led 3-0 and looked on their way to taking down the Glasgow Scotties (7-3) in their second matchup of the Florida Beach Bash.
WC head coach Derek Schuler knew that the Scotties, known for their aggressive approach at the plate, would be able to score sooner or later, but even he didn’t foresee a 13-run outburst in the closing innings.
“We knew we’d have to score some runs, but we didn’t step on them when we had the chance,” Schuler said.
The Glasgow charge started when senior starter Adam Smith (who also drove in the team’s three runs) was relieved because of a tired arm.
“We’ve got three pitchers who are really throwing well for us, but once they come out, we’re having some trouble closing games,” Schuler said. “We just need a few other guys to step up on the mound for us, but we’re getting better every day.”
In their first contest at the Florida Beach Bash, WC impressed Schuler in their 1-0 win against the Caldwell County Tigers (2-6).
He praised the team’s ability to “do all the little things” in the contest. With senior Travis
Mattingly throwing a complete-game shutout, the Commanders were able to win the game off of an RBI single from sophomore Trae Coulter that drove in senior Thomas Pettus.
“This game was by far one of the best game we’ve played thus far this season,” Schuler said. “It was a great way to start off our trip to Florida.”
In the final game before their Florida trip this spring break, WC dropped their first district contest of the season, falling to the Nelson County Cardinals (6-3, 2-0) 11-0.
On the mound for the Cardinals was senior Jared Proctor, a University of Kentucky commit, who shut out the WC offense.
“We weren’t mentally able to get over the hump of facing off against such a strong pitcher,” Schuler said. “That hurt us at the plate.”
Sophomore Trae Coulter was on the mound for the Commanders, who was relieved in the game after throwing five innings because of a sore arm.
The score soon became out of reach for the Commanders, skyrocketing from 4-0 to 11-0 in only two innings.
“Things got a little out of hand at the end,” Schuler said. “We’ve got to stay focused for an entire game to have a chance to win against good teams like Nelson.”