Baylor Offense Alive In 10-4 Win At Soddy Daisy

Red Raiders Collect 14 Hits In Non-District Win Tuesday

Tuesday, April 2, 2013 - by John Hunt

There was nothing on the line at Soddy Daisy's Tom Higgins Field Tuesday night more than bragging rights between the visiting Baylor Red Raiders and the host Trojans.

These two teams normally have two of the better baseball programs in the city and they normally play competitive games that are close, interesting and feature outstanding play on both teams.

Tuesday's game started out like that, but the Trojans simply couldn't keep pace as Baylor scored at least one run in five of the seven innings en route to a 10-4 victory.

It's been a trying spring for coach Jared Hensley and his young Trojans, who don't have a single senior on this year's roster.  Errors, both physical and mental, have been the achilles heal for the Trojans most of the season and even though they made four in Tuesday's game, that wasn't the bottom line of why they lost for the 11th time in 14 games.

The Red Raiders, improving to 9-2 with a big series at home against Ensworth looming this weekend, swung the bats with authority as they collected 14 hits.

Seven of the nine starters had at least one hit, including Tanner Hulse, Colton Jumper and Alex Armstrong, who finished with three apiece.

Another thing that kept Soddy Daisy off-balance was Baylor's use of six different pitchers. 

Junior southpaw Swede Umbach earned the win as he was the pitcher of record in the third inning when the Red Raiders scored three runs and gained the lead for good.

"I'm very pleased with the way we played," said Baylor coach Gene Etter after the game ended.

"We used several pitchers.  They only got to pitch an inning or so and a couple of them strugged at tmes, but somehow they managed to make it work.

"I was kind of worried when I saw them play McCallie yesterday.  They trailed 9-4 at the end before scoring five runs to tie. I got kind of nervous when I looked up at the scoreboard and we were leading 9-4 in the seventh.  I felt a little better when we pushed across that 10th run," Etter added with a smile.

Senior Dustin Baker started and was relieved by centerfielder Taylor Maxey with one out in the second.  Baker re-entered in the third as Maxey returned to center.

Umbach came on in the third and allowed one run on one hit, but he was replaced by Maxey with two outs in the fourth after giving up back-to-back singles to Christian Amos and Baylor Stewart.  Maxey needed just two pitches to get a grounder to third to end that inning.

Armstrong, who started at first, took over in the fifth and pitched an inning while Andrew Belcher and Hulse finished the game with an inning apiece.

Baylor scored two in the first on an RBI-single by Jumper and a sacrifice fly by Blake Layne, but Soddy Daisy came back with three runs in the bottom of the inning.

Nobody scored in the second, but Baylor took the lead for the last time with three runs in the third,

Hulse reached on an error to lead off and scored on a double by Jumper.  The next two came home on fielder's choice grounders by Jackson Cooper and Bryson Crimmins.

Soddy Daisy got to within 5-4 with a single run in the third, but Baylor added a single run in the fourth before tacking on insurance with two in the fifth and two more in the seventh.

"Their offense did a nice job as they strung a lot of hits together," said Hensley afterward.

"They had a great plan off attack.  They used a bunch of different pitchers and that kept us off-balance a little bit, but we're just trying to get better.  We can't be concerned with wins and losses right.

"All the credit goes to Baylor as they did a good job at the plate.  I felt like we hit the ball hard, but it seemed like it was always at somebody.  Baylor made the plays on defense and they were just better than us tonight," Hensley added.

While Hulse, Jumper and Armstrong had three hits to lead the Baylor attack, Maxey had two hits and scored a pair.

Layne only had a double in the seventh, but he finished with three runs batted in.  Cooper and Davis Culpepper had the only other hits for Baylor.

Clift was the only Trojan with two hits.  Carter, Caden Ricketts, Amos and Stewart all had one single apiece.

Baylor   203  120 2 -- 10 14 1

Soddy Daisy  301  000  0 -- 4 6 4

WP -- Swede Umbach; LP -- Christian Amos.

(Email John Hunt at nomarathonmoose@comcast.net)



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