AMERICAN LEGION BASEBALL

Sumter must now win or go home

BY DANNY KELLY
danny@theitem.com
Posted 8/9/18

ASHEBORO, N.C. - Despite losing to Alabama state champion Troy Post 70 7-4 in their opening game in the American Legion baseball Southeast Region Tournament on Monday, the Sumter P-15's are not disheartened. They look to bounce back today in an …

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AMERICAN LEGION BASEBALL

Sumter must now win or go home

Posted

ASHEBORO, N.C. - Despite losing to Alabama state champion Troy Post 70 7-4 in their opening game in the American Legion baseball Southeast Region Tournament on Monday, the Sumter P-15's are not disheartened. They look to bounce back today in an elimination game against the loser of today's 9 a.m. game between South Carolina state champion Chapin/Newberry and host Randolph County Post 45. The game was postponed on Wednesday due to rain.

"(The game) worked in their favor," Sumter starting pitcher Rylan Williamson said of Troy. "We got squeezed by the umpire. We need to build some momentum (for Thursday)."

Williamson threw four innings against Troy, giving up seven hits, four runs - all of them earned - three walks and three strikeouts. He will play second base on Thursday.

"I think we played well," said Sumter third baseman Daulton Dabbs. "We were hitting the ball around the field and doing a good job with the pitch count. We need to simplify the game, get singles, bunts and score runs and not (focus on) getting doubles and triples."

Dabbs recorded a hit and scored a run in two at-bats.

"We need to get a good night's rest (for Thursday)," left fielder Bobby Crisp said. "We play at the same time tomorrow and we're in the losers bracket now."

The team looks to prepare for two potential opponents, one of them being Chapin-Newberry, whom the team has lost to three times already, including twice in the state tournament. Sumter beat Randolph County in a meeting earlier this season.

"I don't want to play them," Williamson said of Chapin/Newberry. "But we need to focus on velocity and hit the ball to right-center and right field. We haven't been hitting home runs."

However, Dabbs welcomes the challenge.

"I want to play Chapin/Newberry," he said. "They beat us, but I don't feel like they're a better team; we need to focus on the shift."

Crisp knows what he wants to focus on heading into Thursday's elimination game.

"We need to look at kids' swings," he said. "We got burned twice (against Troy), so we need to look at how they're swinging."

The team needs to be motivated if it wants to come out on top and play again on Friday.

"I hope we have more energy tomorrow than today," Williamson said.

Sumter also has something else working in its favor, according to Dabbs.

"We have our ace (Lathan Todd) pitching (Thursday)," Dabbs said