Choctaws rally in sixth to get past Collierville

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Dyer County’s baseball team showed just how much it has grown since mid-March as it took a four-run sixth inning but the Choctaws rallied behind a strong performance on the mound from Taylor Sipes to take a 4-1 win over Collierville on Monday night at USA Stadium in Millington.

“This gives us huge confidence this week and headed into May,” Dyer County head coach Ben Glasgow said. “It’s a very, very solid win for our program this time of the year.”

A big contributing factor to the Choctaws’ win was sophomore pitcher Sipes, who limited the Dragons to just one run on four hits to keep Dyer County within striking distance.

“He’s gotten more and more confident as the year has gone on and he pitched tonight,” the Choctaw head coach said. “He mixed it up well and threw the right pitches at the right counts.

“The game never got too big for him and he just pitched. He kept us in the game like a pitcher is supposed to do and we kept battling at the plate and we found the way.”

Collierville picked up its lone run in the top of the second, getting an RBI double from Perkins to give the Dragons a 1-0 lead after an inning and a half.

The Choctaw defense and Sipes kept it a one-run game until the bottom of the sixth when the offense took control of the game. Dyer County led off the half inning with three straight singles from Langdon Gordon, Cam Barlow and Cayden Stafford to load the bases.

Collierville looked ready to get out of the frame as Tanner Holcomb grounded to the Dragon first basemen who threw home to get the force then a strikeout followed to put the Dragons within one out of escaping the jam.

But, senior Dallas Parker singled a 2-2 pitch to left to plate two runs and give Dyer County its first lead of the night.

“Dallas has been rock-solid for us all year,” Glasgow said. “He’s one of the guys that makes our lineup go.”

John Evans followed with a two-run double to give Dyer County a 4-1 lead after six innings.

“Just to focus on them more on the approaches that we were taking,” the Choctaw head coach said what he told the team before the bottom of the sixth. “Just the tendency of their pitchers that we had seen all game to get locked in a little bit.

“Get more focused and sharpen up their approaches.”

With the lead and a pair of insurance runs with him on the mound now, Sipes put the Dragons away, striking out the side to seal the win and give the sophomore pitcher seven Ks on the night.

Evans led the way for the Choctaws going 2-for-3 with a single and a double with two RBI. Gordon added a pair of singles in the win for Dyer County.

The Choctaws return to the field this afternoon when they travel to Briarcrest for a rematch with the Saints beginning at 6:30 p.m.

“We need to execute,” Glasgow said of the plan during the Choctaws’ district-free week. “Wins and losses come and go.

“Sometimes you play great, you lose, whatever. But, we need to execute the way our kids are coached to execute. If we can do that consistently this week, then we will be ready for next week.”

University School of Jackson 13, Dyer County 10

The Choctaws battled back from an early deficit, but a pair of five-run Bruin innings doomed Dyer County on Friday night in Jackson.

Trailing by three runs after the opening two frames, the Choctaws answered back in the third, getting an Eli Walker sacrifice fly then a Gordon RBI single to cut the USJ lead to 3-2 after two and a half innings.

But, USJ answered in the bottom of the fourth, scoring five runs to push their lead to 8-2.

The Choctaws picked up three more in the fifth on an RBI single from Kaleb Hall and a two-run base hit by Barlow to cut it to 8-5.

The Bruins, though, answered with five in the fifth to take an eight-run lead after five innings.

The Choctaws had one more rally left, getting a grandslam by Barlow in the seventh as well as a Parker fielder’s choice to plate another run before the Bruins got a strikeout to end the game.

Barlow went 2-for-4 at the plate with a single and a homer with six RBI.

Holcomb took the loss on the mound, allowing five runs on five hits with two strikeouts.

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