Originally created 05/15/98

Wolfpack faces test vs. Dalton



EVANS -- So far this season, Greenbrier's baseball team hasn't had any trouble in its state playoff series with Crisp County or Henry County.

But listening to Terry Holder talk this week, the Dalton Catamounts (26-4) may provide his team the stiffest test of the season. The best-of-three state playoffs series begins at 1:30 p.m. today at Greenbrier. A second game will be played 30 minutes after the first.

"This is by far the best team we've faced all season," Holder said. "But we're still glad to be in the state playoffs. We know we have our work cut out for us."

Holder sent a group of coaches to Dalton last week to scout the Catamounts in their series with Marist. Dalton won their series 2-1.

"They've got two left-handed pitchers (who) are outstanding," Holder said. "I think one's name is Vaughn Dixon and he's like 12-2 (on the mound) and the other one's name is Jeremy Cox. They rave about their pitching."

Pitching is one thing, but in Dalton's six games during the postseason with Lithia Springs and against Marist, the Catamounts have combined to score 59 runs in those two series. That's enough to have Holder worried.

"They're beginning to hit the ball really well and scoring a lot of runs," he said. "And they're a big ball club. They have a shortstop (who's) about 6-foot-6 and their second-baseman is also a big kid."

Greenbrier (21-3) didn't see many left-handed pitchers this season.

"You never know what's going to cause you problems in the playoffs,"

Holder said. "If you've got a pitcher on the mound, whether he's right-handed or left-handed and he can throw strikes, he can still cause problems."

Dalton will send Dixon (12-2) to the mound in the first game, while Greenbrier will counter with right-hander Will Anderson (9-1). Cox (7-1) will start the second game for Dalton, while Hampton Rowland (8-1) will get the call for the Wolfpack.

The Catamounts showed how explosive they can be in their series with Marist. Trailing 9-3 heading into the seventh inning of the second game, Dalton scored five runs to close the gap to 9-8 before Marist went on to win the game. However, Dalton came back to win the series Saturday with an 11-10 victory.

The team is closing in on 60 home runs this seasons and the Catamounts are batting around .400 as a team. Nick Son leads the team with 13 homers.