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Motlow College Athletic News

Motlow Bucks lead nation in home runs heading into TCCAA conference play

Feb. 28, 2018

The Motlow Bucks, who lead the nation with 30 home runs already this season, put their full power on display Tuesday afternoon when they hosted and swept the Cumberland College JV 24-0, 11-1 at the Driver Baseball Complex.

The Bucks (10-7, 0-0) have now won five consecutive games, sweeping the Covenant College JV 3-1, 8-2 on Monday and beating Schoolcraft College (Michigan) 9-5 Sunday in Gallatin. The Bucks will open TCCAA conference play this weekend, traveling to Chattanooga State for a three-game series. A single, nine-inning game is scheduled for Friday at noon central, with Saturday's doubleheader scheduled to begin at 11 a.m. central.

While Motlow's power hitting has taken the spotlight, and rightly so, the Bucks' pitching staff has quietly gone about establishing itself as well. Logan Walters, Tyler Harmon, Carson Pack, Colin Smith and Chandler Hardiman each had quality starts during the winning streak, and the Motlow bullpen has been impressive as well.

The Bucks scored five runs in the final two innings to come from behind and beat Schoolcraft. Dallas Bryan (2-2) got the win, pitching the final three innings of hitless baseball. Paul McIntosh, Johnny Mangini and Colin Smith all homered, with Mangini banging out three of Motlow's 10 hits.

Pack (2-1) was overpowering in game one on Monday, pitching six innings and allowing just two hits with 12 strikeouts. After Pack gave up a double to open the seventh, Kobe Foster got the final three outs to record his third save. Paul Rahman hit his first home run of the season for Motlow, while Nathan Sanders had a pair of runs batted in.

Harmon (1-2) was the winner on the mound in the second game against Covenant, tossing 6.1 innings and allowing just four hits with nine strikeouts. Justin Parker got the final five outs, four by strikeout. Smith and De'Andre Pitts each drove in two runs.

Motlow's offense took advantage of 10 walks in the opener against Cumberland, scoring 14 runs in the first inning on the way to one of the most lopsided wins in school history. Hardiman (1-0) allowed two hits in three innings, and Darin Keller pitched the final two innings allowing just one hit with three strikeouts. Sanders, McIntosh, Troy Weatherly and Tre Bailliez each homered, with Bailliez driving in six runs and McIntosh hitting a grand slam. Weatherly had three hits for the Bucks, who had 15 as a team.

Smith (1-0) got the win in game two on Tuesday, going three innings and allowing just two hits with three strikeouts. Jordan Burdette pitched two solid innings and Chase Dixon tossed a perfect sixth inning for Motlow. Weatherly hit two home runs, while McIntosh, Mangini and Pitts also homered. Weatherly had four hits in the game and drove in three runs.

Motlow's 30 home runs on the season is two more than Central Florida and five more than Midland (Texas). Weatherly has nine, second in the country behind a Central Florida player, and Mangini and McIntosh each have six, tied for sixth in the nation.

Paul McIntosh
Motlow's Paul McIntosh prepares to swing during a recent game at the Driver Complex. McIntosh, a freshman catcher from Miami, has six home runs on the young season, part of a Bucks' power brigade that leads the nation with 30 home runs. Motlow Staff Photo.