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Clinton slides past Cougars in opener

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Eight errors prove costly for Campbell County against Dragons in District 3-AAA

By Chris Cannon

ccannon@lafollettpress.com

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Errors proved costly against the Cougars, thwarting their hopes of upsetting their former coach.

On Monday night, Campbell County saw five errors, as Clinton scored all three of their runs off of errors by the Cougars in their 3-0 loss.

“That’s the way we’ve been through our scrimmages and the first two games,” returning head coach Ryan Browning said. “If we make a mistake, we tend to go right back out there and make another one. We need to do a better job of going back out there and getting our heads in the game.”

Tuesday saw much the same fate, as a 4-3 loss saw a total of three Campbell County errors.

Only two of the Clinton Dragons’ runs were earned in the defeat.

“It’s not just been errors to start an inning,” Browning said. “It’s been right at a crucial time. We’ve gave up seven runs in two games, and I think two were earned…as a pitcher, you think you’re out of the inning, and it wears on you.”

However, it didn’t effect them much.

Hunter Scott, Campbell County’s leading pitcher, tossed in 14 strikeouts on Monday night.

His ERA remained at zero, as all of the Campbell County runs came across unearned.

“For me, I just threw it over my head and kept throwing strikes,” Scott said. “For (Clinton), they just hung in there. We got to the sixth inning and come back a little bit with the bases loaded. We just couldn’t get the bats going.”

Browning said it was good to see his team working with each other.

Bo Farris called much of the game from behind the plate.

“Hunter threw the ball well. I let him and Bo work together, and they called a good game. I started out early, and I just turned it over to them. Hunter had that curve ball working. I threw it for strikes, and then threw it low when he had to get out of the inning.”

Andrew Evans also had a good game on Tuesday, only allowing two runs.

After relieving Scott on Monday night, Evans was called on for starting duties.

“Andrew did great,” Browning said. “I bet he didn’t throw but about 70-75 pitches. That was great coming back from last night. He said he felt great, and for the last three weeks, his arm has been in great shape. He said he’s ready to go. That’s good. He threw the ball well, and he mixed it up well.”

Farris, Campbell County’s catcher, had the best seat in the house to see the pitcher’s skills.

“They were hitting the spots like crazy,” he said. “Everything that I called, they were right there. Hunter had 14 strikeouts, and they were both dominant.”

The losses were tough ones for the team.

Former coach Brad Collette took both wins from his former team, while giving the Cougars (0-2, 0-2 District 3-AAA) two losses in district play.

“I’ve been wanting to play them,” Scott said. “I’ve been waiting for it.”

“It was terrible,” Farris continued. “Not only that this was our old coach, but we struck out 14 times in both games. That’s not how you start it.”

Browning knows that those losses can be overcome.

With errors being the problem, mindset will have a lot to do with it.

“The way we’ve lost, hopefully, we have the mindset that we’ve made the mistakes, and it’s been a little bit of us doing some things wrong,” Browning said. “I think we can get over that against Union County…Hopefully, we can take care of that and get us a win. We look forward to on Monday and Tuesday.”

Campbell County will face off in another duo of District 3-AAA games on Monday and Tuesday, as they look to Anderson County.