MURFREESBORO — Shortstop Brandon Ashworth pounded out three hits as Goodpasture won its opening game in the BlueCross Spring Fling Class AA baseball tournament.
The Cougars' 6-2 victory over Pigeon Forge on Tuesday moved them into a second round game 12:30 p.m. Wednesday against McNairy Central at Blackman High. McNairy edged Red Bank 2-1.
It was by no means pretty as the teams stranded a combined 24 runners (Goodpasture 11, Pigeon Forge 13), and each team left the bases loaded twice. Only once was a team retired in order.
"It was a typical type of state tournament game,'' Cougar coach Richie Estep said. "It was a two and a half hour game, both teams were patient, trying to work the count and do whatever they could to get on base. Both of us had some really good at bats.''
Ashworth, a junior shortstop, got hits his first three at bats, including an RBI double in the fourth which scored winning pitcher Hunter Newman and gave the Cougars a 4-0 lead. He wound up 3-for-4, and leadoff batter Carter Wiseman had three RBIs as Goodpasture had eight hits against four Tiger pitchers.
"I just got up there and battled,'' Ashworth said. "At this point, you can't look too far ahead, just do your best with each at bat, do your best each inning.''
Newman allowed five hits, struck out eight, stranded 10 Tiger runners and upped his record to 12-0 In the second, the Tigers loaded the bases with no outs, but Newman wriggled out of the jam with two strikeouts and a flyout.
"That was huge,'' Estep said.
After throwing 121 pitches, finally Newman turned things over to Wes Demirjian who shut the Tigers down the last two innings, which included a sparkling defensive play by second baseman Ryan Kemp.
"I was pitching on four days rest, so 121 pitches was enough,'' Newman, who has signed with Trevecca, said. I wasn't as sharp as I have been. But I'll be ready to come in later on and close a game if need be.''
Track and field
• Brentwood’s James Lazas continued his family’s win streak in the Class AAA decathlon with his second straight victory. His older brother Kevin won in 2009 and 2010.
James Lazas was the top scorer in the long jump and the pole vault on the second half of competition Tuesday. A day earlier he was the top performer in the discus.
He was no worse than third in any of the 10 events, though, and scored 7,299 points, well ahead of runner up Chaz Hawkins from Centennial (6,529) and teammate Eric Hoff (6,470), who finished second and third, respectively. Lazas’ score also was the highest among any of the three classifications.
• Brentwood Academy’s Jalen Ramsey was the high scorer in the first four events of day two and seven in all yet won the Division II decathlon title by just 47 points over Lane Austell of Briarcrest Christian. Ramsey’s total was 6,840 points.
Ramsey took control in the eighth and ninth events, the long jump and high jump. He went 23 feet, 2 inches in the long jump and 6 feet, 4 inches in the high jump and outscored Austell by 229 points in those events. He gave away more than 100 points on the day’s final event, the 1,500-meter run, which he completed in 5:02.48, nearly 20 seconds behind Austell.
• David Lipscomb’s Jackson Powers was third and East Lit’s Vincent Gilmore was fourth in the Class A/AA decathlon. Powers was the top performer in the shot put on the first day and the discus and 1,500 meter runs on the second day.
• Making its first state tournament appearance, Christ Presbyterian Academy lost a heartbreaking 4-3 decision to Unicoi County in their A/AA semifinal match at Old Fort Park.
The Lions were leading 3-2 after singles, but lost both doubles matches as freshmen Zane Mills and Jack Zieman fell 9-7 at No. 2 in the deciding match.
"They were the best team we've played this year in our class,'' second-year coach Jeremy White said. "It's a great experience getting here. Fittingly, it was our ace, Lucas Spickard and two seniors, Coble Whitaker and Cade Meinel who won our singles matches. It think our future really look bright for us.''
• Ravenwood shut out White Station 4-0 in the Class AAA girls semifinals and advanced to Wednesday’s championship where it will face Dobyns Bennett.
• Brentwood won 4-0 over Houston in the Class AAA boys semifinals and earned the right to face Knoxville West for the championship.
• University School of Nashville swept Donelson Christian Academy 4-0 in an all-Middle Tennessee Division II-A boys semifinal. USN gets Knoxville Webb in the championship round.
• Montgomery Bell Academy did not get the expected matchup with Baylor for the Division II-AA after the Big Red rolled past McCallie 4-0 in the semifinals. Memphis University School upset Baylor in the other semifinal.
• Brittany Elmore and Mimi Cartwright each had two-RBI doubles in a six-run second inning that propelled Goodpasture to an 8-4 victory over East Hamilton in the opening game of the Class AA tournament.
Elmore finished 2-for-4 with two runs scored and two RBIs, and Cartwright was 1-for-3 with one run scored and three RBIs. Cartwright also was the winning pitcher.
All nine batters had at least one hit for Goodpasture (25-5), which led 8-0 after the top of the fourth.
• Savannah Hill struck out 18 and allowed just two hits without a walk as Davidson Academy cruised past Tipton-Rosemark 12-0 in the Division II-A tournament.
Both hits were bunt singles in the sixth. Hill struck out the last four batters she faced and twice struck out seven straight.
Kenzie Sadler had a game-high three hits and four others had two each for DA, which finished with 15 including seven in a seven-run seventh inning.
• Nationally ranked Brentwood scored one goal too many as it defeated Science Hill 2-1 in a Class AAA quarterfinal contest.
The Bruins (17-1-2) led by two on goals by Blake Chidester and Matt England when they gave Science Hill its only score with an own goal in the 67th minute.
• Reid Webber and Michael Oruma scored second-half goals as David Lipscomb overcame an early deficit and defeated Notre Dame 3-1 in the Class A/AA tournament.
Curtis Hunt pulled the Mustangs (16-4-2) even after they allowed a goal in the 31st minute.