June 25, 2008 Edition

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The Tuckerman Bulldogs won the 13AA USSSA Baseball Tournament held in Marion June 20-22. Team members included (front, from left) Josh Cooper, Will Hubbard, Eric Wilcoxson, Trent Fortson, Cade Niswonger and Zach Crisler. Back row (from left) Coach Pharis Smith, Hayden Defries, Grant Black, Jacob Defries, Drew Fortson and Coach Ronnie Fortson.

Bulldogs are state champions

The Tuckerman Bulldogs, a team consisting of youth from Lawrence, Jackson and Indpendence Counties, won the 13AA USSSA Baseball Tournament held June 20-22 at Marion. The Bulldogs became the first 16th-seeded team to win the state title.

Tuckerman claimed the championship with a 13-5 win over the 11th-seeded Arkansas Lightning. The Lightning struck first, with a walk and error, making it 1-0 after one inning.

The Bulldogs scored two in the bottom of the second to take the lead. The Bulldogs took advantage of the Lightning's pitching woes and scored three in the bottom of the third, fourth and fifth innings.

The Bulldogs, with tired arms of their own, changed pitchers after the Lightning added two runs before the Bulldogs added two insurance runs in their final at bat.

Earlier games

After losing to the Benton Bulldogs 11-3 and to the Crittenden County Eagles 6-5 in pool play, Tuckerman defeated the Conway Cobras 12-0 in the first round of bracket play.

In the second round of bracket play, the Bulldogs shocked the top-seeded Benton Bulldogs 10-7 on Saturday night, sending the Benton team home early.

Tuckerman met the Benton/Bryant Razorbacks in the quarterfinal round on Sunday. The Bulldogs jumped out to an early lead, and four innings later, run ruled the Razorbacks 11-3.

Next up was the Hurricanes of Springdale, who came in with an overall record of 19-2. The Bulldogs jumped out to an early 5-0 lead, but the Hurricanes answered with four runs of their own.

The game then became a pitching duel and was scoreless for the next three i


In the top of the fifth inning, with bats rattling, the Bulldogs tacked on four runs to insure the win as Tuckerman recorded a 9-5 victory.

Team members from Lawrence County include Eric Wilcoxson, Zach Crisler, Hayden Defries and Jacob Defries.

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