By TONY EIERDAM
Last year and again last week, Mineral Wells Rams head coach Bret Barrick has chosen to pitch No. 1 starter Matt Tincher in the second game of a three game series.
The plan worked all the way to the fourth round last year, and last week Barrick stuck with his plan as Tincher threw 14 strikeouts and a three-hitter to seal game two over Iowa Park which also swept the best-of-the-three series.
The series win advances the Rams to the area championship series, where they will face Alvarado.
Game one will be at 7:30 p.m. today at Alvarado.
Game two will be at 11 a.m. Saturday at Pratt Field on the campus of Mineral Wells High School, and game three, if necessary, will follow 30 minutes after the conclusion of game two.
However, Barrick, knowing that Alvarado has an outstanding No. 1 pitcher as well, Dylan Lemons, doesn’t want to show his hand in this series.
“Game time decision,” Barrick said. “I will not comment on who will go first for us on the mound as that will be a game time decision depending on what the matchup we want will be.”
While Tincher has struck out 14 batters in seven innings in the playoffs, Lemons also has a nice strikeout/innings pitch ratio as well.
The junior righty is 7-1 and has struck out 116 batters in 60 innings this season and posted a 0.93 earned run average.
While most baseball fans would love to see a Tincher/Lemons matchup, they will not know until Friday’s game.
“(Lemons) is a big righty that is pretty good and the rest of their pitchers will compete and throw strikes, which is the same as us,” Barrick said. “From what I have heard they are almost identical to us as a team.
“I know Coach Hall will be aggressive on the bases with bunts, hit and runs, and steals. He does an outstanding job teaching his kids how to read pitchers and get jumps.
“They are very fundamentally sound and shouldn’t make many mistakes. “
Barrick was pleased to se his offense come alive in the Iowa Park series with 13 runs in the series, including eight runs and 10 hits in the deciding game-two victory.
“Right now, our pitching and defense are pretty good and have carried us thus far,” Barrick said. “But we have had moments when we hit pretty well and we will have to continue to get runners on and then work hard to find ways to get them around the bases.
“I think this will be a great matchup and pretty even. We will have to play well and take advantage of our opportunities.”
Rams/Alvarado area championship baseball series features two top starting pitchers
By TONY EIERDAM
- Local Sports
Mineral Wells summer track sends 11 to state meet after strong regionals
THE COLONY – The future continues to look bright for Mineral Wells track and field, as 11 members of legendary head coach Jackie Harvey's summer track club punched their tickets to the TAAF state meet in College Station – to be held July 31-Aug. 3 – after a dominant showing at the regional meet in The Colony, July 18-19.
FWIW: Good, clean hate – Ranking the area's best rivalry games of the 2014 football season
By CLINT FOSTER
Football season is fast approaching and with it those glorious games between teams that love to hate each other, which we call rivalries.
I'm speaking, of course, about sports hate – the only beautiful kind. It's the stuff built on history and tradition that inspires simply the fiercest and most entertaining games of every season.
Palo Pinto County and the surrounding area have no shortage of fierce football rivalries.
The University Interscholastic League's realignment often causes new rivalries to be born and old ones to be rekindled. But which rivalries are the area's very best for 2014? The one's you circle your calendar for and make sure you don't miss.
I can think of at least 10.
So, for what it's worth, here's my list of the area's best, can't-miss football rivalries of the upcoming 2014 season.
Local Bowlers Roundup set for first weekend of August
Mineral Wells Women's Bowling Alliance invites you to join them Aug. 3 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at Mountaineer Lanes for their second annual Bowlers Roundup. The event will feature snacks, tips from the pros, information on league bowling and two hours of great exercise.
Something in the water
Mineral Wells is well known as the home of Crazy Water, and by all accounts the city's swim team went absolutely berserk in their one and only home meet of the summer on Saturday.
Throughout the summer, the Mineral Wells Rams have been hard at work preparing for football season.
Hooks and Slices 7/11
In the Holiday Hills Country Club Guys and Dolls tournament, locals Denny and Sherry Hall turned in rounds of 77 and 73 to take first place in the opening round and second place on Sunday in the fourth flight. George and Linda Hutton turned in two solid rounds to place both days. The twosome shot 71 and 72 to take first place on Saturday and second place on Sunday in the second flight.
GRAPEVINE – The Mineral Wells High School cheerleaders attended the Universal Cheerleaders' Association's cheer camp in Grapevine two weeks ago and proved that spirit will definitely be high at every Rams and Lady Rams sporting event this coming school year.
Millsap selects Lee as new head volleyball coach
MILLSAP – The board of trustees at Millsap ISD recently announced their hire of Denise Lee as the new head volleyball coach for Millsap High School.
Waldrum leads the way in MW's latest swim meet
TROPHY CLUB – The Mineral Wells Water Moccasins city swim team took to the pool once again June 28 and showed valiant effort against some tough competition at its latest meet in Trophy Club.
As I've written the last two weeks, Dave Campbell's Texas Football magazine is on shelves and, more importantly, in my office. Can you tell I'm excited for football season?
- More Local Sports Headlines
- Mineral Wells summer track sends 11 to state meet after strong regionals