Atmore 11-year-olds exit regional tournament
By By Michael S. Hill
Advance Staff Writer
The 11-year-old Alabama State Champs traveled to Spartanburg, S.C., to compete in the Cal Ripken Southeast Regionals this past weekend, but went 0-2 in the double-elimination tournament.
After falling 9-2 to Florida in the first round, Atmore was dumped 12-3 by South Carolina's state champs in the loser's bracket.
South Carolina struck early and often, scoring two runs in the bottom of the first and second innings, and five runs in the third to jump out to a 9-0 lead.
South Carolina pitching held Atmore batters spellbound until the fifth inning when Atmore fought for three runs.
Mitchell Brown led off the inning with a walk. Ryan Chason reached base on an error.
A Cody Norton double scored both Brown and Chason. Norton was scored later off a Guyel Martin single to pull Atmore to within 9-3.
But it was all for naught as South Carolina added three more in the bottom half of the inning to go ahead 12-3. South Carolina pitching struck out eight Atmore batters while allowing just four hits.
Anthony Matthews hit one single, Martin hit two singles and Norton hit one double.
In the first game against Florida, Atmore's defense faltered early. Florida scored four runs in the first and second innings to catapult to an 8-0 lead.
Atmore managed two runs in the bottom of the second to make the score 8-2. Joe Drew singled and advanced to second on an error. He was advanced to third on a groundout, and was scored on a Chason single. Singles by Norton and Anthony Matthews brought Chason home.
For the game, Jonathan McNeil, Corey Flowers, Mitchell Brown, Drew, Chason, Matthews and Norton each hit one single. Skylar Rolin hit a single and a double.
Florida scored once more in the fifth to make the final score 9-2 and send Alabama to the loser's bracket.