On Saturday, March 13, the Thomson Middle School Diamond Dogs traveled to Burke County for a midseason tournament. The TMS Dogs dominated, winning all three of their games.
In the first game, the Dogs' opponent was Glascock County. In a 12-4 victory, Austin Phillips recorded the win for the Dogs, pitching five innings with eight strikeouts and no walks.
Starting pitcher Clint Rushing after unleashing a pitch against Washington-Wilkes.
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Jake Unokur came on in relief, pitching one inning with three strikeouts, two walks, and no hits or runs. The leading hitters were Phillips, who went 2-3 with a double, and Will Anderson who was also 2-3 at the plate.
Coach Brett Chalker said, "I was proud of the kids for bouncing back after a loss to Washington-Wilkes and a shaky first inning against Glascock. We finally pushed across some runs with some key hits."
In the second contest, Thomson took on Jenkins County and emerged victorious by a score of 8-6. The leading hitters for the game were Unokur, who recorded two hits -- including a double -- in three trips to the plate; Justin McCorkle, who went 2-4; and Phillips, who was a perfect 3-3 as a hitter. McCorkle pitched the first two innings of the game, recording one walk, two hits, three runs, and one hit batsman while recording four strikeouts. Phillips followed McCorkle to the mound, recording four strikeouts, one hit, one walk, and three runs. Credited with a save was Unokur, who pitched the final inning, recording two strikeouts, no walks, and no hits.
Coach Chalker was proud of his troops.
"Our eighth graders, Austin Smith, Justin McCorkle, and Austin Phillips, stepped up and showed good leadership when we were down in the last inning," he said.
In the final clash for the Dogs, Thomson won a close contest by a score of 4-3 against Burke County, the host team for the tournament. The Dogs' leading hitter was Clint Chalker, who was 2-2 with a triple. Will Anderson was the Dogs' first pitcher, recording one strikeout, three walks, three runs, and two hits. Clint Rushing pitched three innings, striking out five batters and allowing only one hit.
Coach Chalker was clearly thrilled with his team, which yields both familiar and new heroes each game.
"The player of the game is Clint Chalker. He came in and provided outstanding pitching for us. He baffled Burke County with a mixture of fastballs and curveballs," Coach Chalker said.
The wins helped erase memories of a loss last week.
On Tuesday, March 9, Thomson Middle was in action against the Washington-Wilkes Middle School Tigers at Sweetwater Park in a game which was delayed 30 minutes by threatening rainshowers.Ý At the conclusion of the game, it was the Tigers who created the thunder, as the Dogs lost 5-1.TMS starting pitcher Clint Rushing was charged with three runs while striking out several Washington-Wilkes batters.Ý He was relieved late in the third inning by Will Anderson who surrendered two runs after playing most of the game at first base.