Morris and Levi McCurry Fuel Orioles Comeback Win
Never let go of the rope.
The Orioles took that advice with some good ol’ baseball pull and grit. The birds of prey closed out the regular season with a come-from-behind 5-4 win over the stubborn Reds on Tuesday night in the Troup County Men’s Baseball League.
Guy Morris and the Orioles rarely led in the game, which they ultimately won. The birds found a way and most of the time they do.
The Orioles clinched the No. 1 seed in the upcoming end of the season league tournament. The birds improved their record to 8-2, as well.
And they found themselves out of breath in doing so. The Reds were a hard team to beat at the Harris Baseball Complex.
The Orioles assumed the game would be relatively simple, but it was not. The orange-clad birds trailed most of the night, from 1-0, to 2-1 and then 3-1.
“We’ve had the lead in most of our games (this year),” said Morris, the Orioles 19-year-old first baseman.
But on this night the birds would have to work harder than a bare-footed farmer in the heat of August.
“We found our focus, and we swung the bats. I love baseball,” said Morris, a member of the Troup High baseball alumni.
His bat would be needed once again, but this time in the Men’s League. Morris got a rally started for the Orioles with a single to left field in the top of the third inning.
That came right ahead of an Ayden Brooks base hit and a Reds wild pitch. The Orioles were dealing.
They would soon score, too. Colton Webb provided the tying RBI single, making it a 1-1 game.
The Reds had already scored their first run in the bottom of the first inning with three straight singles from Justin Norris, Kevin Caudill and Drew Cantrell. The Reds 1-0 lead would be short-lived, however.
The Orioles third-inning rally was on the way. But then again, so was a Reds tally or two.
In the bottom of the third the Reds re-established themselves with a 3-1 advantage. The Reds would score twice with two outs, courtesy of a Kevin Caudill single, a wild pitch, a walk and an Orioles throwing error.
The Reds took a 3-1 lead to the fourth inning. But in the top of that inning the Orioles would go ahead for good with a four-run rally.
Jesse Dodgen and the Orioles opened the frame with two singles. Dodgen had one hit, and Cam Gosdin had the other, of the infield variety.
Cory Matticola also walked to load the bases for the birds. Todd Sauls followed with an RBI single. The Orioles trimmed the Reds lead to 3-2.
Levi McCurry kept the line moving. McCurry singled in the tying run, deadlocking the game at 3-3.
“We started to have some fun. We’ve got a full team, and we were just trying to win,” said McCurry, the Orioles left fielder.
Guy Morris then put the birds ahead, 4-3 behind a worm-killing single to left field. Ayden Brooks generated another RBI with an infield single.
The Orioles were now airborne with a 5-3 lead. The birds had just enough runs, too.
Justin Norris and the Reds would pull a little closer in the bottom of the fifth. Norris drove a run-scoring single to right field as the Reds closed to within, 5-4 of the Orioles.
The Reds would load the bases one more time in the seventh inning. But that did not include any more runs.
As baseball fate insisted, the Reds would fall to 4-6 on this league evening.