Originally created 04/24/04

Easy day enjoyed by Evans



Tri-Cities gave Evans chance after chance Friday night. The Knights responded with run after run in an 11-1 region victory that was halted by the 10-run rule.

"We've been on the giving end of a lot of errors this year," Evans coach Ricky Beale said. "It was good to see the other side of the game-changing errors today."

Evans (14-5) watched an early 1-0 deficit evaporate thanks to Tri-Cities' generosity with the gloves in the second inning Friday.

"Extra outs helped us out a lot today," Evans second baseman Brad Freeman said. "They had trouble getting a glove around the baseball. If we put the ball in play, there's a good chance for us to get on base."

The chances for the visiting Bulldogs (10-10) began to unravel when Ken Raborn reached after third baseman Andre Jones just pulled Kristopher Clark off the first-base bag. Doug Wylie stroked a solid single before a Ryan Pressley grounder was mishandled by Tri-Cities shortstop Sean Walton.

The gloves turned completely to stone later in the inning, when pitcher Zack Backer reached after the easy portion of a 4-3 putout couldn't materialize.

Clark dropped a clean throw from second baseman Mario Felton.

It was the third of five Tri-Cities errors along the evening. Evans needed just three hits to score its first four runs of the night thanks to walks, hit batsmen and those errors.

"When a team boots the ball like that, we are going to make them pay," Wylie said. "We can capitalize because we got a lot of big boys stepping up and getting the big hits at the opportune time. It put a lot of big numbers on the board tonight."

Wylie had three hits and scored two runs on the night. Brad Freeman matched him with three hits and two runs batted in from the No. 8 spot in the order.

"I was just looking for first-pitch fastballs," Freeman said. "Every time I came up to the plate I saw them. Two of the hits I had today were off those. I saw I wasn't going to do too much with their guy's curve but his fastball was flat and I was able to hit it."

The Knights closed the book on Tri-Cities with a six-run fifth inning to invoke the 10-run rule.

NOTES: Evans senior catcher Mike Armstrong accepted a scholarship offer this week to play baseball at Mercer next season.

"I'll tell you what Mercer is getting a steal," Beale said. "They're getting a strong hitter, a great catcher, a wonderful leader and an even better student and person."

Reach Jeff Sentell at (706) 823-3425 orjeff.sentell@augustachronicle.com.