March 07, 2007 Edition

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Cats slash Indians in opener

Bobcat Tyler Kennedy prepares to release a pitch during Walnut Ridge's season opener against Marked Tree. The Cats started the season with an 11-5 victory.
Submitted Photo ~ Ashley George

Debbie Richey
Staff Writer

Walnut Ridge hosted Marked Tree in the 2007 baseball season opener on Feb 28.

William Ruthven homered to start the game for Marked Tree. Bobcat starting pitcher Tyler Kennedy recovered to strike out the side.

In the bottom of the first inning, Walnut Ridge's Chris Logan singled, scoring Jarod Blackwell and Ryan Weir to give the Bobcats a 2-1 lead.

Kennedy continued pitching well, denying any walks in the next three innings. Walnut Ridge scored another run in the third inning when Noah Burnside singled, scoring Weir and giving the Bobcats a 3-1 lead.

Marked Tree notched two runs in the fifth inning, but Walnut Ridge answered with three runs in the bottom of the fifth. William Wilcoxson and Logan Gaither each singled and came in to score on a single by Logan. Logan later scored on a single by Brandon Dawson.

The Indians scored two runs in the sixth, but Walnut Ridge owned the inning, scoring five runs. Logan and Ryan Sluder each drove in a run, and Dawson drove in two runs.

Marked tree failed to score in the seventh inning, as the Bobcats took the victory 11-5.

Logan batted three-for-four with five RBI's. Dawson went two-for-four with three RBI's.

Kennedy took the win on the mound, allowing three runs on six hits, walking two and striking out nine in five innings. Dawson pitched the last two innings for the Bobcats, allowing two runs on three hits, striking out four and walking one.

Westside

Walnut Ridge traveled to Jonesboro on Thursday to face Westside in the Warriors' baseball opener.

The Bobcats scored first, with Weir walking and later scoring on a double by Logan.

In the third inning, Gaither singled and later scored on a sacrifice fly by Blackwell. Weir walked again and scored on another double by Logan.

Westside scored two runs in the bottom of the third inning and added three more runs in the fourth.

Westside led 5-3 heading into the fifth inning. Walnut Ridge stepped up and tied the game 5-5, but gave up a run in the bottom of the inning to fall behind 6-5.

The Bobcats scored two runs in the top of the sixth to take a one-run lead. Westside answered with three runs in the bottom of the sixth inning and held on for a 9-7 win.

Weir, Sluder and Logan combined to pitch seven innings, allowing only four earned runs on seven hits and walking only four.

The Bobcats committed five errors.

Gaither led the Bobcats, batting three-for-four and scored three runs. Logan went two-for-four at bat with two RBI's.

Nettleton

Walnut Ridge hosted Nettleton on Friday

The Raiders scored four runs in the first inning.

The Bobcats tied the game 4-4 in the bottom of the second, when Kennedy doubled and scored on Weir's two-run homer.

Nettleton recorded four more runs in the third. Walnut Ridge scored once in the bottom of the third to close to within 8-5.

The Raiders scored runs in the fouth inning, with the Bobcats scoring two runs also, which included an RBI double by Logan.

Nettleton added another run in the fifth inning. Weir hit his second two-run homer of the day in the bottom of the fifth to bring the Bobcats to within two at 11-9.

Nettleton recorded three more runs in the seventh inning to secure the win 14-9.

Weir led the Bobcats in batting, going two-for-five with five RBI's. Logan hit two-for-four for the day.

Walnut Ridge is 1-2 on the season.

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