Valley advances in Dixie Youth World Series with 3-2 win over Texas
Published 4:57 pm Monday, July 29, 2019
By Jonathan Bym
LUMBERTON, N.C. — Coming from an off day in the Dixie Youth Division II World Series on Sunday, Alabama coach Shane Andrews wasn’t sure how his team would respond on Monday.
That question was answered within the first few minutes of Monday’s battle between the last two undefeated teams in the AAA division between Alabama and Texas as Andrew’s squad scored four runs en route to earning a 10-6 win.
“Those four runs in the first inning proved to be the difference out there,” Andrews said. “They’re tired, and we got that off day yesterday that helped out a lot, but they didn’t go to the beach or go swimming so I was happy they rested. They were a little amped up today.”
Alabama will face North Carolina at 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday, and has already secured a spot to be one of three teams that will play for the championship on Wednesday. A win on Tuesday would put Alabama one win away from the title.
“When you’re dealing with 9- and 10-year-olds, I wouldn’t call it the driver’s seat, but we are in a good position,” Andrews said. “When we played North Carolina last time, it was a pretty good game, 3-2. It will be another dog fight for us tomorrow.”
Texas gets a rematch with Virginia at 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, with both teams looking to avoid elimination and earn a spot in the championship scene.
Alabama leadoff batter Cole House had a pair of hits in the win, and scored the first run of the game in the top of the first inning, as well as the first run in the fifth inning where Alabama tacked on a trio of runs.
House and Mason Yarbrough scored on a Texas error at third base after a hard hit ball by Jax Miller in the first frame. Miller ended up at third on the play and crossed home on an Isaiah Gray single later in the first.
Texas and Alabama traded two-run innings starting with Texas’ half of the second inning. Bryson Morrrow’s two-out double in the second cut Alabama’s lead to 4-2 before Alabama responded in the top of the third when two runs scored via passed balls.
“I told them out there that when you get on a team like that, you can’t come in the second inning and lay a goose egg,” Andrews said. “You have to stay on them.”
Alabama added some breathing room with a three-run top of the fifth inning that was highlighted by a Yarbrough two-run double and a Miller RBI single off the center-field wall to bolster the lead to 10-5.
On top of being a vital part of the offense, Miller also came in to throw two innings of relief, and held Texas to one hit.
“He brings the same thing to the park every day,” Andrews said of Miller. “He was to work extremely hard and he works his butt off to be where he’s at.”
Hunter Andrews also had a hit for Alabama in the win.
Texas’ offense was led by Billy Prince with two hits. A.J. Morton, Swayde Walker and Morrow each added a hit and at least one RBI. Hunter Payne also added a hit for Texas.