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Anderson County scored two runs in the bottom of the sixth to earn one of its best wins of the season, 3-1 over Franklin County last Wednesday night.
“It was just a better overall attitude and approach,” said Anderson coach L.W. Barnes. “As upset and let down as I have been over the previous four games, I was just as proud after that game.”
Travis Phillips turned a fastball around for a home run that Barnes called a “line drive no doubter.” Phillips’ blast gave Anderson a 2-1 lead, then one out later, Cole Sayre reached second base on an error. Josh Brown followed with a bloop single to right, his second hit of the game.
“Josh had an outstanding game, going 2-for-3 at the plate and getting the huge insurance RBI,” Barnes said.
The sixth-inning rally was enough to get the win for right-hander Steven Watts, who gave way to Landon Case to pitch the Franklin County seventh.
Watts gave up three hits. “Franklin County basically couldn’t square up his fastball,” Barnes said.
Watts struggled with his off-speed stuff but walked just one. He did hit two batters.
Franklin scored its only run in the third on a double, sacrifice bunt and a sacrifice fly.
Anderson got the run back in the bottom of the inning when Granville Hayes and Michael Harley stroked back-to-back singles, then after moving to third on Clay Guffey’s bunt, Hayes came home on Alex Sparrow’s single to left.
Barnes said Franklin threatened in the seventh but with two on and none out, Case fielded a sacrifice bunt attempt and fired a strike to third base to get the lead runner. “He made a very difficult play look routine, but that’s what he does,” Barnes said.
After a passed ball put runners at second and third with the go-ahead run at the plate, Case got the final two batters for the victory.
“We had great heart, great effort,” Barnes said. “I was very proud and hopefully, we can continue this type of baseball for a few weeks. We played Bearcat Ball against Franklin County.”
Western Hills romps
Western Hills took advantage of a lethargic Anderson County attack to post a 7-2 win at Barnes Memorial Field last Tuesday.
“We managed only three hits versus mediocre to bad pitching,” Anderson coach L.W. Barnes said. “(Logan) Woodside had two and Alex Sparrow had a swinging bunt in the first. Other than that, no one hit the ball hard all night.”
Woodside belted a two-run homer in the first for Anderson’s only offensive excitement of the night.
“It is the same problem we have been facing the last three weeks,” Barnes said. “We refuse to let the pitched ball travel and get to the hitting zone. No matter how much we coach, preach or yell, nothing is sinking in to our hitters.”
Barnes said his team wasted a nice pitching performance from Michael Harley. “He threw well enough to win but we absolutely gave him zero offensive production.
“One interesting thing you don’t see very often, in the fourth, when Western Hills took the lead for good, they scored three runs on five pitches. We scored two on 90-plus.”
Bearcats beat South Oldham
The Bearcats defeated South Oldham, 8-3, on Saturday as Michael Harley got the complete game win. The game was the first of a scheduled three-team triple-header but the other two games involving North Laurel, were canceled. Anderson is now 11-13 on the year.