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Motlow College Athletic News

Bucks host Southwest Tennessee this weekend to close regular season

April 23, 2018

The Motlow Bucks will close out the 2018 baseball regular season when they host TCCAA rival Southwest Tennessee for a three game series this weekend at the Driver Baseball Complex on Motlow's Moore County campus. Friday's nine inning game begins at 2 p.m. and Saturday's doubleheader is set for a noon start.

The Bucks (34-16, 15-8) won one out of three games this past weekend when the nation's second-ranked team, Walters State, visited the Driver Complex. After the Senators dominated Friday's nine inning contest 10-1, Motlow came back strong and won Saturday's first game 10-0 before Walters State won the series finale 9-6.

Motlow currently sits in third place in the TCCAA standings, with Walters State (46-6, 20-3) having clinched the regular season title. Columbia State (32-16-1, 17-7) is in second place, one game ahead of the Bucks, and Dyersburg State (31-13, 14-9) sits in fourth place, one game behind Motlow. Columbia and Dyersburg will close the regular season this coming weekend against each other.

After this weekend, teams will be seeded according to their conference finish for the upcoming TCCAA/Region VII Tournament, which begins March 6 in Chattanooga at Chattanooga State. The tournament winner will advance to the East/Central District playoff against the top team from Georgia, with the winner of the that three game series moving on to the Junior College World Series in Grand Junction, Colorado.

The Senators jumped on Motlow starting pitcher Tyler Harmon (3-3) early Friday, scoring three runs in the first inning and five more in the third as Harmon struggled with his control. Harmon allowed six earned runs with seven walks in his three innings of work. Chandler Hardiman pitched well in relief, giving up just three hits and two runs with 10 strikeouts in his six innings. The Bucks managed only five hits, with two coming from Nathan Sanders as the leadoff batter.

Motlow got an outstanding pitching performance from Logan Walters (6-2) in Saturday's opener, allowing only five hits with seven strikeouts as the Bucks invoked the 10-run rule after six innings. Leading just 1-0 after three innings, the Bucks scored six runs in the fourth, two in the fifth, and added the final run in the sixth.

Sanders, Troy Weatherly and Colin Smith each homered. Paul McIntosh had three hits and drove in five runs, while Patrick Music also garnered two hits along with Sanders as part of Motlow's 10-hit performance. The third game of the series featured multiple lead changes as the Senators jumped out front 2-0 in the first inning before the Bucks came back to score four in the bottom of the inning as Smith doubled to drive in two runs and Music doubled in another. Walters added a run the second, then scored five more in third to create an advantage that the Bucks could not overcome.

Kobe Foster (8-2) took the loss on the mound, allowing seven earned runs and eight hits in his four innings of work. Jase Carvell then pitched two perfect innings, striking out four, before Dallas Bryan came on to pitch the final inning, giving up one run on just one hit.

Paul Rahman hit a solo home run in the fourth inning and Weatherly added his 22nd homer of the season in the fifth, but the Bucks could not get the rally going that they needed to overcome the Senators' lead. Weatherly leads the nations in homers with 22, and the Bucks as a team continue to lead the country in homers, as they have all season, with 90.

Troy Weatherly
Motlow first baseman Troy Weatherly watches his 22nd home run of the season take flight during the Bucks contest against Walters State Saturday. Weatherly, a sophomore from Montgomery, Ala., hit two home runs over the weekend and leads the nation with his 22 home runs on the season. He is closing in on the all-time Motlow record of 27 home runs during a season, set by Joshua Arteaga in 2000. Jeff Reed Photography.