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Waldrop not fazed by huge Memphis role
Senior FHS baseball star welcomes challenge of leading Admirals to 2nd state title in a row

The mighty Farragut Admirals and its No. 1-Class AAA state rank, No. 3 nation rank by BaseballAmerica and 42-2 record are headed back to Memphis.

The Class AAA state tournament began Wednesday with the Admirals defending its state title Wednesday morning (after press deadline) against the team it beat in the 2003 title game — Munford. Hunters Lane and Columbia are also on FHS’s four-team side of the bracket during the eight-team tournament.

The Admirals hoped to be 2-0 heading into Friday morning action (10 a.m. central daylight time). Saturday night’s championship game at 8 p.m. (central) features the two bracket champions and will be played at AutoZone field.

FHS 10 GHS 1

Farragut earned its fourth consecutive state tournament trip after a convincing win over the Greeneville Greene Devils 10-1 in sectional play Friday at John Heatherly Field.

FHS staff pitching ace Kyle Waldrop improved his record to 12-0 and kept his earned run average around 0.10 after striking out 10 while allowing only three hits in his complete game performance.

Waldrop gives a quick reminder as to why pitching in a possible state championship game Saturday night will not faze this talented senior.

“That won’t faze me, I threw in the state championship game as a sophomore,” Waldrop said of his hard-luck 2-1 loss to LaVergne in the 2002 state championship’s final round. “I was unfortunate, we got the loss there, but I felt I that I threw a pretty good game, we just didn’t come up with the win.”

How does this team compare to the 2003 state champions who finished 48-1 and second-ranked in the nation?

“I think we’re playing just as well as last year,” senior catcher Scott Dean said. “We’ve had two little slip-ups this year, but that didn’t mean that much to us.”

As for the increased pressure of being a “marked” team, “Of course there’s going to be a little more pressure because they’re all out to get us, it might make us tense up a little bit, but I think we know what it takes to win the big games,” Dean said.

FHS head coach Tommy Pharr said, “Probably a little extra pressure, in the state tournament every game is pressure, everyone down there is pretty good. There is pressure whether you want there to be or not.”


The Admiral offense got rolling early when Dean knocked a two-RBI double to the gap in right-center. “Scott has done a great job, he got the big hit early to put us in the lead — a solid player and a good kid,” Pharr said of his first year starter. Dean led off the sixth inning with a homerun.

FHS broke things open in the fourth inning when Cody Brown and Philip Sherrard each had two-RBI singles. Harrison Eldridge and Tony Delmonico had RBIs in the fifth inning. Drew Reagan also drove in a run.

“Anytime you win and go to state it’s a good ballgame, we played all right, we didn’t play our best,” Pharr said. “It’s just a good solid ballgame.”


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