Babe Ruth's 14- and 15-year-olds eliminated in districts
By By ROBERT BLANKENSHIP
Advance Managing Editor
The Atmore Babe Ruth 14- and 15-year-old All-Star teams met similar fates this weekend in the district tournament as both groups' seasons came to an end.
For the 14-year-olds, South Monroe proved to be too big of a hurdle as they lost to them on Friday and Sunday.
South Monroe 13, Atmore 3
Atmore's offense was shut down by stingy South Monroe pitching and the Monroe offense was hot as the game was called after five innings due to the 10-run rule.
South Monroe took the lead after putting four runs on the board in the bottom of the first. They added six more runs in the fourth to give them a 10-0 advantage.
In order to keep the game going, Atmore needed to score in the top of the fifth. Jeremy Rolin led off the inning with a walk and Devin King put runners at first at second after being hit by a pitch. Josh Montel followed with another walk to load the bases. All three runners scored in the inning. Matt Amerson hit an RBI single in the inning and a wild pitch scored Rolin.
Having cut the lead to 10-3, Atmore's chances were dashed in the bottom of the fifth as South Monroe scored three runs to end the game, 13-3.
Chris Graham pitched two innings as the starter for Atmore. Josh Morgan and Amerson came in as relievers.
Atmore 3, Brewton 1
The Atmore team scored two runs in the bottom of the sixth to pull out a 3-1 victory over Brewton on Saturday.
Don Alexander put Atmore on top in the first inning as he scored on a single by Matt Amerson.
In the top of the third, Brewton's Damien Jackson scored to tie the game.
Pitching and defense took over until the sixth inning as Alexander and Amerson each scored on a gaming winning double by Chris Graham.
Alexander earned the victory as he pitched five innings as the starter. He was relieved by Norris Brooks for the final inning.
South Monroe 4, Atmore 3
The two teams met again on Sunday with Atmore facing elimination if beat. Atmore led through much of the game, but South Monroe scored two runs in the top of the eighth that proved to be the difference.
Don Alexander led off the bottom of the first with a single for Atmore and he scored on a groundball to make the score 1-0.
In the third, Josh Montel laced a single and scored on an error to give Atmore a 2-0 advantage.
The score remained the same until the top of the sixth when South Monroe's Seth Mack and Blake White scored to tie the game.
In the top of the eighth, South Monroe's Corey Nall and Michael Norris scored to take a two-run advantage.
Three outs away from elimination, the Atmore squad began to rally. Matt Amerson reached on a fielder's choice and with one out, Jeremy Rolin reached on an error. Chris Graham followed with the second fielder's choice of the inning. With two outs and runners at first and third, Tyler Wilkins hit a single to bring Atmore to within one, 4-3.
The one run proved to be enough to give South Monroe the victory as they recorded the final out to advance to the district championship game.
Having lost a heartbreaker to Brewton in the first game of the district tournament, one loss meant elimination for Atmore's 15-year-olds. They gave it a good shot as they took two games before being defeated by South Monroe, 7-3.
Atmore 12, Monroeville 6
Atmore took a big lead early against Monroeville on Saturday as they avoided elimination, 12-6.
Monroeville took a 2-0 lead in the first inning. But in the second, Atmore put together a big inning a six runners scored. Robert Hardy, Steven Shirley, Craig Montel, Dereke Martin, Ronnie Pettway and Phillip Eubanks each scored to give Atmore a 6-2 advantage.
Monroeville closed the gap to 6-4 in the top of the fourth.
Atmore's Franklin Boykin scored in the bottom of the fifth, making the score 7-4.
Monroeville scored again in the sixth and seventh to cut the lead to only one run, 7-6.
But, in the bottom of the seventh, Atmore scored five runs to clinch the victory. Kevin Adair, Boykin, Shirley, Montel and Martin made the score 12-7.
Adair earned the victory and pitched a complete game for Atmore.
Atmore 12, Evergreen 5
Atmore stayed alive again as they defeated Evergreen, 12-5, in their second game Saturday.
Kevin Adair, Franklin Boykin, Steven Shirley, Craig Montel and Robert Hardy gave Atmore some cushion right off the bat as they each scored in the bottom of the first, giving Atmore a 5-0 advantage.
Evergreen scored one in the third only to have Atmore come back with four in the bottom of that inning to increase their lead to 9-1.
Evergreen scored one run in fifth and three runs in the sixth.
Atmore added three runs in the sixth to secure the victory.
Shirley, Brian Strawbridge and Craig Montel pitched for Atmore.
South Monroe 7, Atmore 3
Atmore stayed with South Monroe through five innings, but four runs in the sixth met the end of Atmore's season.
South Monroe scored one in the top of the first and two in the third.
Dereke Martin scored for Atmore in the bottom of the second and again in the fourth to keep Atmore close, 3-2.
In the bottom of the fifth Kevin Adair led off with a triple and tied the game on a single by Boykin.
But, that was all the offense Atmore could produce and a four-run sixth inning for South Monroe provided them a 7-4 victory.
C. Montel pitched the complete game for Atmore.