FHS ends DeMarini strong

Carson Wright may be a newcomer to the Farragut High School baseball team, but he’s wasted little time finding a home at the top of the batting order.

Wright, Farragut’s senior right fielder and leadoff hitter, helped the Admirals notch a pair of lopsided victories Saturday, April 8, in the DeMarini/Diamond Aca-demy Classic. Farragut downed Bowling Green (Ky.) 15-1 in five innings before routing Starrs Mill (Ga.) 13-3 at John Heatherly Field/The Ballpark in Farragut.

The Admirals [17-4 entering the week] featured a balanced attack in both contests, but it was Wright who had the most stellar of days. Against Kentucky’s Purples, he went 2-for-3 and clubbed a grand slam in FHS’s 14-run third inning. Against the Panthers [19-3], Wright hit a solo homer and stole a base.

“When I hit the grand slam, I was just trying to hit a line drive and I was lucky enough to have it go over the fence,” said Wright, who joined the Ads after moving to East Tennessee from Indiana. “I’m just happy that coach [Matt Bucker] gave me a chance to come out and join the team.”

“He’s a good one,” Buckner said of Wright.

Saturday’s victory over Starrs Mill culminated a three-game stretch in the weekend tournament that saw the Admirals win four games in less than 48 hours — and all four games ending early thanks to the 10-run rule. Farragut beat Larue County, Ky. [11-0] and Smyrna [10-0] Friday, April 7, before coming back for a morning game against the Purples.

The Ads left the park Saturday afternoon in the midst of a five-game winning streak.

“We played really well today,” Buckner said. “We played very clean defense. We started well and then we took a step back last weekend and we bounced back and played good baseball today and in this tournament.”

The Ads came up on the short end of three lopsided decisions at the Tennessee/Kentucky Chal-lenge March 31 and April 1 in the Nashville area. FHS lost to Trinity (Ky.) 13-1, dropped a 10-3 game to Ballard and fell 10-6 to St. Xavier.

Upon returning to the Volunteer State, Farragut picked up District 4-AAA wins against William Blount and Lenoir City before last weekend’s dominance

“We’re hitting the ball well, one through nine,” Wright said. “Everyone contributes and everyone is accepting their roles.”

In Saturday’s opener, FHS pitcher Ryan Hagenow struggled out of the gate, but escaped significant damage in the first frame when Wright made a great catch for the third out with the bases loaded.

Farragut knotted the game, 1-1, in the second when a fielder’s choice by Zach Yunger plated Parker Noland, who walked.

During the Ads’ third-inning outburst, Chandler Chambers hit a two-run homer after Wright singled. Yunger had a two-run double and Jake Grooms had an RBI single. Dalton Webb and Brad Grankoski drew bases-loaded walks. Ashton King had a scoring single and Noland knocked in a run with a double.

In its second game of the day, FHS darted to a 2-0 lead. Chambers started things in the bottom of the first with a one-out triple. He scored when Hagenow doubled. Hagenow came home when Justen Freeman singled.

Reliever Brad Day retired nine of the 10 Panthers, throwing just 21 pitches in 3 1/3 innings.

With Farragut trailing 3-2, Yunger homered to tie the game in the second. The Admirals regained the lead when Wright’s homer bounced off the scoreboard.

Farragut’s four-run sixth inning featured Yunger’s two-run homer over the scoreboard. Chambers added an RBI single. King scored when Wright reached on an error.