It was off to Franklin, TN for the annual Memorial Day Weekend ‘Rain’ Tournament. At least the last three years we experienced either a rain delay or complete rain out of this tournament. According to the forecast, this one would receive rain as well.
But we took the field early Saturday morning against the Franklin Comets. Their coaches are comprised of some of the nicest people you will meet. They play with dedication to be positive and encouraging to both sides before, during and after the game. The Bugs pull out a win of 5-2 behind pitching of Brandon and Aaron and doubles by Justin, Brandon and Alex.
Then it was on to face the Nashville Knights. The Knights score one in the second and Bugs come back with two in the third led by Patrick’s line drive to center. What seemed like a defensive game taking forever finally broke in the fifth when Steven hit his first GRAND SLAM of the season. That opened up a loud dugout of Bugs bats where they batted around in the fifth. Bryce and Dylan showed their patience at the plate by either walking or being hit by the pitch on each of their at bats. Pitchers Justin, Arron and Alex combined to hold the Knights back from scoring many more and Bugs with 13-3.
Sunday came with the Bugs facing the Power. If you have been reading this blog this year, you know the weekly competition against the hard hitting Power. Last weekend Power won the championship, this weekend the Bugs turned that around. An early Sunday game would find the Bugs fighting to stay in a game that saw them trailing for most of the game, 3-1. However in the fifth Bugs bats came alive and getting the win 9-3 to earn a place in the championship game.
A two-hour break for other teams to finish up gave the Bugs time for lunch and Chapel. Coach Pete led Chapel for the Bugs family sharing how we treat others matters and who you run with can change your life. Referencing 1 Corinthians.
Then it was off to face the many year rival, Tennessee Ravens. Gresham was the chosen pitcher for this game, with four other pitchers ready to close the deal behind him if needed.
The Bugs batted first. A lead-off walk, a hit, a walk and then a sacrifice fly to right by Luke led the Bugs to get three runs in the top of the first. But the Ravens came back hitting the ball hard and gathered two runs in the bottom of the first. Bugs get two more in the second and hold the Ravens to 3-up-3-down in the bottom of the second. Great plays by Justin at short and Steven in center helped hold the Ravens scoreless in the second, third and fourth.
A few key hits and bunts led the Bugs for a total of eight runs in the game. Gresham continued to throw hard and held the Ravens to three through the fifth. Steven made two ‘super-star’ catches in center (totaling five catches in the game) that quieted the Ravens bats.
Then in the bottom of the sixth (last inning) the energy of Gresham slowed and the bats of the Ravens came alive. They hit hard shots to the fence and gathered two more runs before Gresham closed the deal by striking out the last batter, going the complete game. Bugs win 8-5.
The Bugs bring home the Franklin Baseball Club Memorial Weekend Classic Tournament Championship. The weekend positives were focused pitching which walked few, learning the value of a sacrifice (be it a bunt or fly ball) and team morale that did not give up!