STORY BY CHIP CIRILLO | PHOTOS BY CARL EDMONDSON, JR.
MURFREESBORO — Summit never really recovered from its loss to Farragut.
The Admirals rallied from a five-run deficit to beat the Spartans 8-7 in the second round of the Class AAA baseball tournament at Siegel on Wednesday.
Then a few hours later, Bartlett erupted for 11 runs in the second inning of a 12-9 win over Summit (26-13), ending the Spartans’ season.
“It’s tough, we had just lost on a walk-off an hour and a half before,” Summit coach Chad Kirby said. “We knew as soon as Farragut scored that run it was going to be tough sledding for this game.”
Angus Pence’s two-out single in the bottom of the seventh inning handed Summit a crushing loss against Farragut (40-3), a nine-time state champion.
Summit is one of only three teams to score more than five runs against the Admirals this season.
The Spartans built a 7-2 lead in the top of the fourth, but Farragut rallied with three in the bottom of the inning and one in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings.
Still, it was an impressive season for Summit.
“Obviously, we didn’t meet our final goal, which was to win the state championship,” Kirby said. “But I think only one team in the state’s going to do that. Regular-season district champs, region champs and won the sectional game.”
Summit’s seniors have won three District 11-AAA titles, three Region 6-AAA championships and made two state tournament appearances.
“A pretty good run for them,” Kirby said.
Vanderbilt signee Chris McElvain hit a 3-run double, and he scored on a wild pitch to give Summit a 4-1 lead in the top of the second over Bartlett (32-13). This was just before the Panthers sent 16 batters to the plate in the bottom of the inning.
“We just couldn’t locate,” McElvain said.
Summit pitchers walked nine batters and hit three others.
“The name of this game is don’t give people free bases and they gave us a few free bases early,” Bartlett coach Josh Stewart said. “When that happens and you give people free bases, the next thing leads to a hit. The baseball gods kind of take care of it, kind of punish you for it.”
Bartlett’s Brayden Matthews punished the Spartans with a grand slam in the seventh. Caleb Fuller, the No. 9 hitter in the order, added a two-run single.
Ole Miss signee Cole Smith, who went 3 for 3, capped the inning with a two-run double.
Summit stranded 10 runners, but after falling behind 12-4 it cut the final margin to three.
Bartlett plays Farragut in the lower bracket final at 2:00 p.m. Thursday.