Brewton 14s wrap up district crown
By By BRUCE HIXON Sports Editor
Most people shy away from stressful situations. Brewton Babe Ruth 14-year-old all-stars coach Bob DeFrancisco actually welcomed it.
DeFrancisco and his team also welcomed Sunday's final result, a 10-3 win over Monroeville that clinched the District 7 championship played at T.R. Miller High School.
Brewton had needed just nine total innings of play to clobber Monroeville and South Monroe by a combined 29-4 margin to reach Sunday's championship round.
Instead of another cakewalk, Brewton found itself in a tight struggle Sunday until it broke the game open in its final at bat.
Both Brewton pitcher Corey Williams and Monroeville pitcher Deke Bettis threw goose eggs at their respective opponent for the first three innings of Sunday's game. Bettis had a one-hit shutout going during that time, while Williams had scattered three singles.
Brewton's bats finally woke up and got to Bettis in the top of the fourth inning. John Mathieu beat out an infield single, stole second and Williams helped his own cause with an RBI triple that put Brewton on the board.
After Tyler Nall followed with an RBI single that made it 2-0, Mabry Cook singled for Brewton's fourth straight hit. Jamar Travis grounded out, but Taylor Berry beat out an infield single that allowed Nall to score Brewton's third run of the inning. The frame lost some steam when Nall was thrown out when he tried to score on a wild pitch, but Jacob Cannon helped pick him up with an RBI double that plated Berry to make it 4-0.
Williams also lost his shutout in the bottom half of the fourth when he walked Eli Hare and both Tyler Rigdon and Joe Holloway singled to produce Monroeville's first run.
Holloway's RBI single prompted DeFrancisco to bring in Justin Payne, who escaped further damage that inning and preserved the 4-1 lead.
Monroeville was able to get to Payne in the bottom of the fifth when Bettis doubled and Cody Philen tripled to make it 4-2. Payne then issued a wild pitch that sent Philen home and just like that Brewton's cut lead to 4-3.
At that point, Sam Sharpe relieved Payne and managed to shut the door the rest of the way with two and two-thirds innings of scoreless relief.
Sharpe continued to work with a precarious one-run lead until the top of the seventh when his
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teammates gave him a lot of breathing room.
Tyler Cross and Garrett Robinson started what would be a six-run rally with infield singles. Williams then came up with his third hit of the game and his second extra base hit when he doubled home both runners to make it 6-3. Nall then lashed a single that scored Williams to make it 7-3.
After Cook reached on an infield error, two more Brewton runs scored when Nall was caught in a rundown after a botched squeeze attempt and the ball was thrown away. That error made it 9-3 and all but sealed the verdict. Monroeville's third error of the inning later in the frame scored Jamar Travis and accounted for the final run.
Brewton will open up Area Tournament action Friday at 5:30 p.m. at L.B. Wallace College in Andalusia where it will face Covington County.
Brewton 000 400 6 – 10 13 2
Monroeville 000 120 0 – 3 9 5