Christian Academy of Knoxville baseball, Division 1-AA state champs last season, look to claim the Division II-A state crown this week in Murfreesboro.
Hitting the road and sweeping Harding Academy 8-0 and 10-1 last week in a best-two-of three series, the Warriors earned a trip to the four-team double elimination tourney seeking the program’s third state title — and eighth for head coach Tommy Pharr.
Webb falls short
A tough early start would end Webb School of Knoxville’s baseball season at home.
The Spartans were riding high after winning the district and regional championships, but things came crashing down.
Closed out its campaign with a pair of losses in a best-of-three series format to earn a Division II-A state berth, Webb (21-10) was eliminated after a 6-3 setback to Tipton-Rosemark Academy Thursday, May 17, at Morris Field.
Webb opened the series with a 7-1 win versus the Rebels in the previous day’s doubleheader. But Tipton-Rosemark would bounce to rout the Spartans 13-3 in five innings in the nightcap.
The Rebels (29-15) were the fourth-seeded team in the West and played loosely according to head coach Brad Smith.
“I knew that they were a great team and I knew that the East was highly competitive. But I watched [Webb] warm up and I knew they were tight,” Smith said.
The Rebels started things early when Cameron Berry and A.J. Green led off the contest with consecutive singles. Wild pitches and errors would lead to three first-inning runs.
“The first two hits they had weren’t the hardest hit balls you’ve seen all year, but they fell in,” Webb head coach Jordan Wormsley said. “They got a couple of baserunners on. They did what they do best, which is bunt, run and put pressure on us. That’s been part of their game the whole year.”
The Rebels added two more runs to expand their advantage to 5-0. Three of Tipton-Rosemark’s first five runs were unearned, as sophomore starting pitcher Mason Patel deserved a better fate.
Patel (4-2), who was pitching his first game in two weeks, allowed just seven hits. He issued a pair of walks while striking out six.
“This is the first time I’ve pitched in about two weeks and I was really hoping to get us one more win today,” said Patel, who doubled to start Webb’s rally in the bottom of the second when the Spartans scored all of their runs. He ended with two hits.
“But we just didn’t quite have enough today.”
Spartans courtesy runner Grissim Anderson scored as Jackson Musrock, A.J. Chambers and Peter Schaefer all had RBI singles.
But Webb left the bases loaded in the frame.
The Rebels added a run in the seventh on an RBI single by Will Turner that plated Corey Mitson.
Spartan Stokes Needham added a late double, but Rebel reliever Zach Seward slammed the door.