Golden Tigers rally late
Mike Self FCT Sports Editor
FLORENCE - Russellville rallied for two runs in the seventh inning and three more in the eighth on Monday to open play in the TimesDaily Classic with a 10-7 victory over Cherokee at University Field.
The Golden Tigers trailed 7-5 heading into the top of the seventh before tying the game on an RBI groundout by Corey Flanagan and an RBI single by Craig Bullion.
After Cherokee stranded a runner at second in the bottom of the seventh, the Golden Tigers surged ahead in the eighth.
Chris Swinney drew a leadoff walk, and Ty Cox followed with a single to center field.
Aaron Harbin bunted the runners over, and Caleb Mitchell's RBI double over the centerfielder's head gave Russellville an 8-7 lead.
Flanagan followed with a two-run double to left-center to make it 10-7.
The Golden Tigers appeared to add another insurance run when Cory Trapp singled home Flanagan, but Flanagan was called out on an appeal play for missing third base.
Trapp made it a moot point, setting the Indians down in order in the bottom of the eighth.
Trapp was the winning pitcher, striking out six in three innings of relief.
The Golden Tigers grabbed an early lead with three runs in the top of the second, but Cherokee came right back with three runs in the bottom half to tie the game.
Seth Fergerson broke the tie with a two-run homer in the top of the fifth to put Russellville on top 5-3.
The Indians responded with a run in the bottom of the fifth and three more in the sixth to briefly take a 7-5 lead.
Fergerson finished 3-for-4, adding a double and a stolen base. Harbin, filling in behind the plate for an injured Torey Baird, added two hits and an RBI.
Flanagan drove in three runs, and Mitchell stole three bases and scored twice.
Baird, one of Russellville's leading hitters, sat out with a sprained ankle. Kerby said he expects the freshman catcher to return in one week.
In other action at the TimesDaily Classic:
Springville 15 Russellville 5
Chris Frias and Lee Sasser each hit a two-run homer in the second inning on Monday to lead Springville past Russellville.
Craig Bullion had two hits, including an RBI double, to lead the Golden Tigers (4-12). Chris Swinney added a two-run double.
Trey Hooper was the losing pitcher. Josh James and Caleb Mitchell also pitched for Russellville.
Springville (12-2) scored four runs in the top of the first inning, highlighted by Jay McCallie's two-run single.
The Tigers added four more runs in the second to build an 8-0 lead, and they eventually stretched it to 13-0.
Russellville got on the board with a two-out rally in the bottom of the fourth.
Bullion reached on an infield single, and Nick Woods drew a walk. Swinney followed with a two-run double to center field.
The Golden Tigers tallied three more runs in the fifth.
Mitchell walked, stole second and later scored on a wild pitch.
Cory Trapp singled and scored on a double to left by Bullion, who would later score on a wild pitch to make it 15-5.
Jacob Taylor pitched 4 2/3 innings to earn the win for Springville. He also went 4-for-5 with two doubles and three runs scored.