LaRue County’s 9-year-old All-Stars won the Breckinridge County tournament over the weekend.
LaRue defeated Hancock 9-6 and Breckinridge 14-9 before facing Breckinridge again for the championship.
In the first game against Hancock, Ty Morris started on the mound for LaRue. He faced five batters, striking out two, allowing no hits and no runs.
Hancock threatened in the second inning when one batter reached first and the second hit the ball to LaRue’s second baseman Chase Puyear. Puyear threw the ball to first baseman Robert Absher for the out; Absher threw the ball to short stop Dalton Skaggs who was covering second for a double play.
Morris struck out the next batter.
Puyear led the second inning score with a double and was driven home two batters later when Absher hit a single.
In the third inning Morris reached first on an error, followed by a hit from Skaggs that plated Morris. Dane Milby then reached base on another error by Hancock. Puyear then hit another double scoring both Skaggs and Milby. Puyear would later score on a passed ball giving LaRue four runs in the inning and a 5-0 lead.
Things changed quickly in the top of the fourth inning when Hancock’s lead batter was hit by a pitch. After two more walks, two errors and another batter hit by a pitch, Hancock had tied the game at 5-5. Morris was replaced on the mound after 66 pitches thrown, striking out four batters. Skaggs replaced Morris and got the last out with a ground ball to short.
LaRue rebounded with another four run inning and sending all nine players to the plate.
Hancock scored one run in the fifth inning.
LaRue came out in the bottom of the third determined to get the lead back. The inning started off with two singles, a Hancock error and another single with LaRue rolling to another 4 run inning and sending all 9 men to the plate for the second straight inning. Hancock would not recover, scoring only one run in the top of the 5th as time expired giving LaRue the victory.
Skaggs returned to the mound as LaRue took on Breckinridge for the second game.
Breckinridge scored first with two unearned runs.
In the bottom of the second, LaRue sent seven men to the plate. Milby and Absher both had singles and Skaggs and Brandon Cecil both drew walks. LaRue scored four runs to make the score 4-2 after one inning. In the top of the second, Breck sent six men to the plate but was unable to score a run.
LaRue’s Caleb Heady led off the second inning with a walk followed by two more walks, a single by Skaggs and a double by Cecil giving LaRue five more runs and a 9-2 lead.
Playing in back to back games started to catch up with LaRue in the top of the third. Breckinridge sent 10 men to the plate, taking advantage of two LaRue errors, two walks and two hits, scoring 5 runs and getting back in the ball game at 9-7. In the bottom of the third, LaRue was able to get two more runs off three hits to stretch the lead to 11-7. Skaggs was replaced after three innings of work, throwing 87 pitches and striking out 6 batters. Absher came in to pitch in the top of the fourth for LaRue.
LaRue capitalized on several Breckinridge mistakes to win 14-9 and earn a berth in the championship.
Skaggs got the victory with Absher pitching three strong innings of relief for the save.
The championship pitted LaRue against Breckinridge in a rematch. LaRue sent Morris back to the mound to start the game. Breckinridge scored twice but Morris struck out three batters to stop the threat.
LaRue loaded the bases with Morris, Skaggs, Cecil and Stephen Greenleaf’s walk drove in a run. Caleb Heady’s walk drove in a second score, giving LaRue a 3-2 lead.
LaRue blew the game open in the bottom of the third. Jake Gardner and Morris reached base on errors. Skaggs and Milby followed with two singles. Puyear, Cecil and Heady drew walks to force a pitching change. Gardner, Morris and Skaggs drew three more walks followed by singles from Milby and Puyear and two more walks from Cecil and Absher. When the inning was over, LaRue had sent 18 men to the plate, scoring 12 runs to break the game open. Morris again shut Breckinridge down in the top of the third.
The rest of the game found LaRue expanding its lead to win the tournament 17-10. Morris got the victory with 71 pitches and striking out four batters. Skaggs threw three innings of relief, striking out seven batters for the save.
(Information provided by Scott Gardner)