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A tip of the cap to military, old times
Ads pay tribute with Armed Forces Night and Turn Back the Clock Night; rebound from nine inning home loss

Within 24 hours, Farragut High School baseball honored the nation's military might, then paid tribute to baseball tradition while supporting funding to fight a crippling disease.

On the scoreboard, the Ads (30-5 overall, 11-2 in District 4-AAA entering the week) lost to West 3-2 in nine innings wearing camouflage uniforms on the inaugural Armed Force Night at FHS's John Heatherly Field Wednesday, April 28.

The next night, same place, Farragut bounced back during the sixth annual Turn the Clock Back Night wearing 1920s-styled uniforms and using wooden bats.

Helping the National Parkinson's Foundation during its first FHS Baseball fund-raiser, the Admirals helped themselves to a 7-1 win against Oak Ridge.

If Farraut defeated William Blount Tuesday, May 4, at FHS (after press deadline), it clinched yet another District 4-AAA League title and top seed for the 4-AAA Tournament beginning this week at FHS and Maryville high schools.

The double-elimination format begins with the first two rounds at 4 and 7:30 p.m., Friday, May 7. (No. 1, 4, 5 and 8 seeds play at one site, and No. 2, 3, 6 and 7 at the other through Saturday).

Final rounds of the tourney beginning Monday, May 10, will be played at Farragut regardless of regular season or tourney outcomes.

Championship games at FHS are set for Wednesday, May 12, beginning at 4 p.m. If necessary a second title game would be played starting around 6:30 p.m. Wednesday.

Against the ORHS Wildcats, Farragut winning pitcher Xander Taylor, a sophomore lefty, allowed just three hits, three walks and one hit batter with six strikeouts in six innings of work.

“He has great potential, and tonight he threw a lot of strikes and mixed it up a little bit,” FHS head coach Matt Buckner said.

Taylor, with only one game’s worth of varsity experience entering 2010, said he’s “learned to get the ball down ... so I don’t get hit hard.

“I’ve improved just by working hard in the off-season,” Taylor added.

Against Oak Ridge, Taylor said he “did pretty well, but I wasn’t working my curveball very well.”

Georgia commitment Nicky Delmonico, junior shortstop, blasted a three-run homer in the first inning following a leadoff single from David Allen and a double from Ryan Montalbano.

Ethan Bennett, senior catcher, popped his school record-building 22nd home run in the third inning.

A.J. Simcox, sophomore starting third baseman, and senior second baseman Stewart Martens each connected for two hits.

Buckner said about Simcox, “Defensively he’s solid ... for the last month he’s been lights out over there,” adding Simcox offensively “has been good all year.”

About replacing three-time All-state third baseman Cade Stallings, Simcox said, “At the beginning of the season I was tight, a little nervous, but later on through the season I’ve become more comfortable.”

“It’s been easier with all the seniors, great leadership on the team,” Simcox added. “I’m more over there for my glove than hitting, but my hitting’s coming around.”

Tyler Noland and Nick Williams also had singles for Farragut versus Oak Ridge.

In the loss to West, Buckner praised starting pitcher Derek Chandler, who worked seven innings.

“I thought it was the best he’s pitched all year,” Buckner said. “He pitched pretty flawless besides one pitch.”

Getting blanked offensively by the Rebels during its final eight at-bats, the Farragut offense suffered from “a really poor approach, and we didn’t make any adjustments during the game,” Buckner said.


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