High-scoring outputs are more the exception than the rule for 17th-ranked Lawrence County this season.
So head coach Travis Feltner and his players welcomed a 10-0 romp Friday night over East Carter in Boyd County’s annual Derby Classic.
The Bulldogs racked up 13 hits in five innings to produce the mercy-rule victory.
“We’ve had a great year so far with 18 wins,” Feltner said. “Lots of people would take that. Offensively, we’ve sputtered a little bit. As a result, we put a lot of pressure on our pitchers and the defense.”
Boyd County slipped past Lincoln County 3-2 in Friday’s nightcap at Larry Addington Field. No details were available at press time.
The Derby Classic wraps up today with four games, beginning at 10 a.m.
A day after being limited to four singles by Boyd County in the tournament opener, Lawrence kept the base paths busy thanks to several line drives, plus six walks and a hit batter by three East Carter pitchers.
“You come out one day and only get a few hits, then the next day it’s 13 or 14,” said Bulldogs senior catcher Clark Rice. “Baseball’s a funny thing.”
Rice and junior outfielder Joe Wallen paced the Bulldogs’ attack.
Rice, who entered Friday with a .340 batting average, drove in five runs with a pair of doubles and a single. He highlighted a four-run fifth inning by drilling a double down the left-field line to score Noah Lambert and Ryan Kingsmore. Later in the inning, Rice scored on an error to make it 10-0.
“It was a fun day,” Rice said. “Everybody was doing their part.”
Wallen did his share by going 3-for-3, with three RBIs and a couple of runs. He walked with the bases loaded in the fifth after collecting two singles and a double.
Feltner said the Bulldogs baseball program is fortunate to have “great” indoor and outdoor facilties to work on their batting stroke and other aspects of the game.
“I can’t imagine anybody in northeastern Kentucky hits more than us,” Feltner said of the Bulldogs’ practice time. “Hopefully, this was a good sign.”
Kingsmore, the team’s leadoff man, kept his season average over .400 with two hits and scored twice. Adam Cavins singled twice and was hit by a pitch, while 8-9 hitters Josh Cantrell and Lambert each scored two runs.
Meanwhile, Lawrence County left-hander Brandon Stevens improved to 6-2 by limiting East Carter to three singles in five innings.
“He’s a senior who is having an outstanding year,” Feltner said. “Brandon has given us a chance to win every game he’s pitched.”
The Bulldogs face a quick turnaround for today’s morning matchup with Spring Valley, from west Huntington. East Carter (13-13) played only one game in the Derby Classic.
EAST CARTER 000 00 — 0 3 2
LAWRENCE CO. 130 24 — 10 13 1
Boggs, Rodgers (2), Suttles (4) and Wells; Stevens and Rice. W—Stevens. L—Boggs. 2B—Rice 2 (LC), Wallen (LC).