Story & Photos by: Brian Tannehill | Director of Photography
MILLBROOK — Kyle Morrison continued his offensive onslaught Tuesday night, falling a single shy of hitting for the cycle as the Wetumpka High Indians picked up a key area win 8-2 over the rival Stanhope Elmore Mustangs. While Morrison led off the game with a double, Mustangs pitcher Colin Woodham was not phased though, as he worked through the inning leaving the Indians scoreless and Morrison stranded.
The Mustangs came out – in the home half of the first – thundering as leadoff hitter Cody Simmons singled. Wetumpka quickly found themselves in a first and third situation with one out. Indians hurler Dawson Fuller wasn’t rattled; striking out one and causing a flyout to end the inning.
“They were able to work out of the first and third situation and settled in after that,” said Indians Coach Michael Dismukes.
After a relatively uneventful second, the Indians got hot in the third and went on a two-out rally sparked by a Ty Brooks’ single. Noah Jones doubled advancing Brooks to third, and Doug Johnson laced one up the middle clearing the bases. The runs put the visiting Tribe up 2-0.
The thundering herd of Mustangs slowed to almost a walk after the first though, Fuller – who struck out the side in the second – continued to sit the boys from Millbrook down in order.
Top of the fourth: two hit batters, and a fielder’s choice later, the bases are loaded with Indians and the reigning Chief just stepped to the plate. Morrison ripped a triple to left clearing the bases and moving Wetumpka’s lead to 5-0.
Brooks singled up the middle, plating Morrison: 6-0.
Stanhope Elmore who – up to this point – is struggling to just to trot, managed a gallop in the bottom of the fifth courtesy of a Colin Woodham triple. Zach Stevens singled to push the run home.
The Mustangs trail 6-1 and the window of comeback opportunities is beginning to close.
Morrison – who had hit three home runs in the three games – led off the top of the sixth with No. 4, as he belted a 2-1 pitch over the right field fence.
Wetumpka High 7 – Stanhope Elmore High 1.
The Herd showed signs of a rally in the sixth, courtesy of a double by Connor Gregg that scored Chase Eddings. The rally was short-lived, ending with that blip of offense.
Wetumpka added one in the seventh to bring the outing to its final mark of 8-2.
Fuller notched the win going six and a third innings, giving up two runs on four hits, with eight strikeouts, two walks. Doug Johnson came in for the save, pitched two-thirds of an inning with one strikeout, no hits, no runs.
“We played well, pitched well, played great defense and had timely hits,” said Dismukes. “There are always things to work on, we just need to keep playing consistent baseball, and get better each day.”
Woodham took the loss on the mound for the Mustangs, working four innings, giving up six runs on nine hits, striking out two. Colton Walls came on in relief throwing three innings, giving up two runs on three hits, striking out five.
Morrison led the offense for Wetumpka going 3-for-4 with four RBIs and a longball. Brooks finished the first game of the series 2-for-3 as well.
For the Mustangs, Cody Simmons, Connor Gregg, Woodham, and Chase Eddings each collected one hit.
The setting shifts to Bazemore Field in Wetumpka for Thursday’s deciding doubleheader. The winner of the series will be area champs and will host the first round of the AHSAA Baseball Playoffs.
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