Relief pitching, big 4th lead Admirals past Govs

Admirals second baseman Sam Schulze chases down William Blount's Chase Falcon in a rundown between second and third Friday, April 18, at John Heathely Field. In only his fourth-ever varsity appearance, Farragut sophomore pitcher Thomas Keyes picked up a critical District 4-AAA win in relief.

Working five innings of relief against William Blount, Keyes allowed no runs, only one walk and four hits with five strikeouts in a 10-2 Admirals victory Friday afternoon, April 18, at FHS’s John Heatherly Field.

“My first outing [in relief during Farragut Invitational], that was nerve-wracking. After that, I’ve been on and it feels good. I’m not nervous anymore. It’s fun,” Keyes, whose team improved to 18-10 overall and 9-3 in district, said.

Saying FHS head coach Matt Buckner advised him he may be pitching some Friday, “My fastball was good, my curveball was good,” Keyes said. “I threw strikes for the most part.”

Buckner said about Keyes, “He’s really pitched well. He’s a strike thrower, just throws a lot of strikes. He’s a young kid but he’s got a bright future.”
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Ads bats come alive, surprise Dawgs in 9

Farragut's Roy Mutta makes a diving catch to help quell Bearden during early play in a nine-inning Admiral win Wednesday, April 16. Managing only one hit and no other baserunners through four innings against a future Tennessee Volunteers pitcher, Farragut looked dead in the water on “Phil Garner Day” at Bearden Wednesday, April 16.

But Bulldogs starter Lane Thomas seemed to lose some sharpness during his final three innings of work (119 total pitches in seven innings according to BHS head coach John Rice), as the Admirals rallied twice late and spoiled Bearden’s bid for a regular season sweep of the series.

Scoring 10 of its 11 runs in four of the game’s final five innings, including four in the top of the ninth, Farragut won 11-7 in Phil Garner Ballpark.

“We’ve been on the wrong end of some of these,” FHS head coach Matt Buckner said. “It’s good to finally get one. Our guys never sunk their heads, kept fighting pretty hard. I’m proud of them.

“We’re a growing team.”

While the Admirals at 18-10 overall and 9-3 in District 4-AAA at week’s end, Bearden fell to 16-8, 7-2.
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Soccer Hawks blank Dawgs

Hardin Valley Academy's Shawn Foster, 13, battles Bearden High School's Ian Schomer, 9, during the Bulldogs versus Hawks matchup at BHS Wednesday, April 16. In what continues to be an excellent school year for many Hardin Valley Academy sports teams going up against Bearden as District 4-AAA rivals for the first time, boys soccer was all Hawks last Thursday evening at BHS’s Bruce Allender Field.

A hat trick, three goals, from Hawk junior forward Shawn Foster propelled HVA to a 4-0 shutout victory against the SoccerDawgs.

Ivan Torres, senior forward, scored the other Hardin Valley goal while Cameron Schneider, a junior forward, added three assists.

“I thought they played well,” Mike McLean, HVA head coach, said after his team improved to 8-1-1 overall while remaining perfect in district action.

Bearden fell to 6-6-1 overall, 3-2 in 4-AAA.
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Pitching power leads Hawks to consecutive diamond wins

Hawks baserunner Vinnie Gambuzza bounces up off second base after successfully stealing. Gambuzza went on to steal third and scored off a bad throw on the same play during play against Grace Christian Academy Thursday, April 17, at HVA. On consecutive days, Hardin Valley Academy used excellent pitching to defeat two of West Knox County’s Christian academies visiting HVA.

Matt Turner, Hawks junior starter, went the distance while allowing just two runs and four hits while striking out nine in a 4-2 HVA victory against Grace Christian Academy Thursday, April 17.

One day later, sophomore Dylan Harris allowed just two hits and no runs with nine strikeouts in 5 2/3 innings — with junior Will Neely near perfect in relief — as HVA blanked Knoxville Christian Academy 3-0.

These back-to-back wins improved the Hawks’ overall record to 21-3, while HVA entered the week on top in District 4-AAA at 10-1.

Against Grace, “Matt Turner throwing a lot of first-pitch strikes” was key, HVA head coach Joe Michalski said. “Our defense was in it. We made a lot of good plays tonight.
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HVA youth shines versus Lady Mountaineers, 13-3

Hawks third baseman Sarah Story fields a bunt as shortstop Leslie Beecham backs up the play during a district matchup with Heritage High School Thursday, April 17. Halle McGuire was the latest Hardin Valley Academy underclassman to shine in softball.

McGuire, sophomore left fielder, belted a pair of doubles while adding a sacrifice fly and an RBI walk in HVA’s 13-3 District 4-AAA home win against Heritage Thursday evening, April 17.

Scoring five times in the fourth inning and five more in the sixth to end it, the Lady Hawks improved 13-7 overall, 6-5 in district. The Lady Mountaineers left HVA as they came: just three wins this season overall and one in district.

McGuire said about keys to her success, “Trust is like the main thing and having confidence and always keeping your head up no matter what pitch goes by. … Trusting my hands at the plate.

“I’ve gotten a lot better since the beginning of the season.”
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Nation’s No. 1 Ads 4-1 in S.C.

Combining the factors of being a month behind their opponets in terms of season developement, and having the tournament’s toughest draw while sitting as the nation’s No. 1 team in Student Sports Fab 50 poll, Farragut boys soccer still held its own in Columbia, S.C., last week.

That was FHS head coach Wallie Culbreth’s view after his team won four of five games during annual Nike Palmetto Cup against South Carolina’s top high school soccer talent. The Ads still fell to No. 2 Fab-50-ranked Wando High School (Mount Pleasant, S.C.) 2-1 in the championship game Thursday, April 17.

“Every one of my kids played like superstars,” Culbreth, whose team left Columbia with an 11-1-0 overall record, said.
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