Diamond Ads fall to M’ville, try to survive

Jake Hagenow said he was in a bit of a slump heading into the second round of the District 4-AAA Baseball Tournament.

But Hagenow, Farragut High School’s senior catcher, saw his struggles come to an end when the top-seeded Admirals notched an 11-1 victory over William Blount in six innings Sunday afternoon, May 7, at John Heatherly Field/The Ballpark in Farragut.

“I had been struggling a little coming in but the guys told me to settle down and just take a breath,” said Hagenow, who went 3-for-3 with a home run, a walk and a three-run double to help lift Farragut past the fifth-seeded Governors. “As a team, I think we had 11 hits and that was pretty good.

“It looks like we’re starting to play like we did at the beginning of the season. If we play like we did when the season started, we’re going to be pretty tough to handle,” he added.

However, a 11-9 loss to Maryville in a winner’s bracket game Monday, May 8, has the

Ads on the brink of season-ending elimination. Farragut played the Heritage versus West winner in a Tuesday, May 9, elimination game [after deadline]. A loss would end the Admirals season, which has happened just once in district tourney play since the late 1990s. A win would assure FHS a Region 2-AAA semifinal game next Monday, May 15.

Farragut [30-8 entering Tuesday’s action] got off to a fast start in the bottom of the first inning versus WBHS [18-13]. Carson Wright, Justen Freeman and Hagenow opened the frame with consecutive singles.

The Admirals took a 1-0 lead as Wright scored when Parker Noland hit into a double play.

Farragut extended its advantage to 5-0 in the bottom of the third. The inning started when Freeman, the Admirals senior second baseman, hit the first of back-to-back home runs. Hagenow followed with a shot over the center-field fence.

Noland walked and Zach Yunger reached on an error. Cade Burkey and Jake Grooms then had consecutive RBI singles.

“We played well,” Ads skipper Matt Buckner said. “We played some really good defense. Ashton King made some big plays at shortstop and we had some great diving catches in the outfield.”

The Admirals scored four times in the fifth as Hagenow had a base-clearing one-out double to make the score 8-0. Courtesy runner Tanner Corum scored on Yunger’s sacrifice fly.

Farragut pitcher Owen Kovacs, a sophomore, picked up a complete-game victory. He allowed one run, three hits and two walks. He finished with four strikeouts.

Farragut ended things early as King clubbed a two-run homer in the sixth after Grooms walked.