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With big sticks and arms, Diamond Ads roll before Saturday double-skid

The rain was light at Farragut’s John Heatherly Field last Thursday night, keeping conditions just playable enough when the Diamond Admirals battled West Knox County rival Webb.

But as first reported on Farragut First Edition,, the presence of FHS senior pitcher Mac Thoreson was a heavy burden upon the Spartans to solve.

They didn’t, as Thoreson’s complete game four-hit shutout ended in six innings thanks to his own bat — crushing a long two-run homer over the left-field fence to cap a 10-0 Farragut victory April 2 in opening-day Sportsbelle Classic play.

“I’ve been struggling a little bit at the plate, so it’s finally nice to get a pitch I could drive,” said Thoreson, whose blast capped a five-run sixth for FHS.

“I felt pretty good on the mound, and in the last few games we’ve really started to get the sticks going a little. We’re coming together as a team, one through nine in the lineup.

“It’s definitely easier pitching out there with a solid lineup behind me,” he added. “I had a pretty good breaking ball, and I was mainly hitting my spots with my fastball and my off-speed [pitches], too.”

Tommy Pharr, FHS head coach, said Thoreson “threw really well, he’s really good. … Webb’s got a good club, and he handled ’em pretty good. And then swung the bat pretty good.”

Farragut dumped Fairmont (Dayton, Ohio) 12-2 earlier that day at Tennessee’s Lindsey Nelson Stadium, the only non-Tennessee team among the 16-team Sportsbelle field.

Though destroying Morristown East 20-0 Friday at FHS in Classic pool play, the Admirals hit a rough patch Saturday despite a 12-2 win against Riverdale at UT.

A loss to Mater Dei (Ind.), 11-6 in a non-Classic game at FHS was followed by being no-hit by Bearden in the Sportsbelle title game, 4-0, at UT. (See story beginning on page 13).

Leading just 2-0 heading to the bottom of the fifth against Webb, Farragut scored three times with only one hit — a Thoreson RBI single. Ethan Bennett added an RBI groundout for the Admirals.

The FHS sixth began with Stephen Weaver’s double to left-center field, his second hit of the game. Weaver’s RBI single scored pinch-runner Stewart Martens in the second inning.

In the sixth, Tyler Noland’s bunt single was followed by Nicky Delmonico being hit by a pitch.

Two runs then scored after Cade Stallings’ grounder was thrown away. Thoreson then settled the issue.

Delmonico walked and scored in the third inning aided by a Stallings single then coming home on Nick Williams’ RBI groundout.

Curt Powell also singled for Farragut.

Jarrod Grayson, Spartans senior outfielder-designated hitter, led Webb with two hits.

“Jarrod’s been hitting the ball well the last two games,” Webb head coach Clark Wormsley said.

Austin Kearns and Michael Carillon each singled for the Spartans (4-4 after the loss).

About losing pitcher Drew Packard, who threw 5 1/3 innings and allowed seven hits, Wormsley said, “he did a tremendous job … against a line-up like they have.”

Against Fairmont, “Nick Williams pitched well,” Pharr said. “Nicky [Delmonico] hit a ball over the scoreboard.” Delmonico also doubled, while Powell tripled.

Also smacking doubles were Stallings, Thoreson, Williams and Bennett.

In beating Morristown East, Delmonico and Thoreson each homered and doubled. Winning pitcher Jordan Cooper worked four innings, reliever Ryan Montalbano one.

Against Riverdale, winning pitcher Michael Leadbetter worked five innings. Noland and Delmonico each doubled.

Delmonico and Noland homered in the loss to Mater Dei.


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