The Carrollton High School baseball team officially reached the halfway point of its Region 7-AAAAA schedule on Wednesday without a single blemish on the league resume.
Clutch defensive efforts, combined with a strong day in the batter's box, proved to be the winning formula for the No. 3 Trojans in a 9-2 home victory over region foe Cass at Cole field.
At the plate, Carrollton (18-3, 8-0 Region 7-AAAAA) was able to get things moving in the bottom of the first when a double by first baseman Chris Gaiter drove home Asa Awbrey to give the Trojans an early 1-0 lead on the visiting Colonels (9-11, 3-5).
Right fielder Charlie Lanier really got the ball rolling in the bottom of the third, driving in designated hitter Andy Smith with a triple and then scoring via fielding error during the next at-bat to put the Black and Gold up by three.
With the bases loaded later in the inning, outfielder Destine Udombon slapped a two-run single off Cass starter Steven Spell to extend the Trojan lead even further. Pinch-runner Jacob Cotton would reach home on the frame as well to put Carrollton up, 6-0.
The home team would provide insurance runs in the bottom of the fifth by way of an RBI single from infielder Brandon Prince and in the bottom of the sixth when the junior Lanier stroked an RBI double to center field and later scored.
Associate Trojan head coach Jamie Sexton was pleased with how the team swung the bats on Wednesday after having to rally to a win on Monday night against the Colonels on the road.
"The hitting was pretty good (Wednesday). Our approach at the plate was better than what it was on Monday," Sexton said. "Cass is a great team with a great pitching staff and we were able to barrel some balls and get a lot of two-out hits."
Equally important in the contest was Carrollton's ability to tightrope out of danger and deter nearly every scoring opportunity for the Colonels.
In the top of the first, Lanier was able to rear back and throw out the Blue and White's Matt Shook at home to rob them of their first run of the ballgame.
With the bases loaded once again in the top of the fifth with two outs, reliever Ryan Anderson forced Colonel pitcher Blaine Ingram into a groundout to short to extinguish yet another Cass rally. The visitors would eventually crack the scoreboard in the sixth and seventh innings, but the damage had already been dealt for the host squad.
"Rhett got us out of some jams and the defense came in clutch behind him, especially in that first inning when Charlie had that big throwout at the plate," Sexton said. "It's always good to see the defense get you out of jams like they did in this game."
The Trojans will now look toward kickstarting the second half of the league docket when they welcome Paulding County to town this Friday at 5:55 p.m.
"Paulding County is another great squad that will give us another tough two games, so we have to keep playing our game and doing what we do best," Sexton said.
"We definitely want to keep the momentum going. We have spring break next week, so that's always tricky with guys getting out of their routines a little bit. We'll do the best we can to keep them on their routines and have them ready to play ball."