KNOXVILLE — Farragut High School’s baseball team got a big dose of humble pie Monday night, March 20.
“This game will humble you real quick and we got humbled in a big way today,” Admirals senior center fielder Chandler Chambers said after FHS came up on the short end of a 2-1 decision against West High School at Lindsay-Hawkins Park in the District 4-AAA opener for both schools. “We’re better than the way we played tonight.
“We know that and we’ll be back.”
Farragut [6-1 overall, 0-1 in the district] entered the game against the Rebels riding high after winning six games and scoring 61 runs in a season-opening tournament over Spring Break last week.
And early, it looked like the Admirals would continue on their torrid pace at the plate.
Farragut engineered a one-out rally in the top of the first inning.
Chambers opened things with a double and Parker Noland walked to put runners on first and second before West pitcher Adam Cupp came up with a strikeout while inducing a pop-up to escape damage.
Farragut, which stranded nine runners, couldn’t take advantage of their early opportunity but the Rebels [5-0, 1-0] got on the board in the bottom of the first.
Farragut had another scoring chance in the second as Justen Freeman walked and Cade Burkey reached on a fielder’s choice, but Burkey was gunned down attempting to steal.
Wright tripled for the Admirals with one out of the third but was stranded there at inning’s end. Farragut got two hits in the fourth but Cupp, who threw a complete game, wiggled out of trouble again.
“He really made some good pitches. ... late in the game, he really had them guessing and he did a good job.” Rebels head coach Buzz McNish said of Cupp, his senior righthander.
Cupp would benefit from a double play in the fourth after Freeman and Burkey had one-out hits.
Admirals head coach Matt Buckner was frustrated by his squad’s offensive struggles.
“We just didn’t do a very good job today and this game has a way of showing you when you don’t play well,” Buckner said. “We won six games last week and then we come in today and we don’t do a good job.
“You have the highest of highs and you have the lowest of lows. I think we’re better than that. I certainly would like to think and hope that we’re better than that. Tonight, we just didn’t do a good job and that’s the bottom line.”
The Rebels took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the fourth, but the Ads answered with their lone run in the fifth when an RBI double by Wright plated Ashton King, who reached on an error.
Burkey singled in the sixth and Chambers doubled in the seventh, but Cupp was able to strand both runners.
“I have to give it to West. They did a good job,” Chambers said.
“They really played a great game.”