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Raiders enter postseason as top seed

By Curtis Carden
Sports Writer
[email protected]
The Unicoi Raiders capped off a perfect regular season on Sunday, July 22, at Chuckey-Doak High School by picking up their 12th win of the season by a score of 4-1 over the Greeneville Colts.
Postseason action began on Monday, July 23, after The Erwin Record’s press deadline as the Raiders faced off against the Greeneville Red Sox in the nightcap of a double header.
The offensive efforts against the Colts came off the bats of sluggers, Ricky Morgan (2-3 3 RBIs, 2 HRs) and Adam Larrimore (1-3, RBI, HR), who combined for all four of the Raiders’ runs.
“It’s great to see Ricky (Morgan) getting back into his groove,” manager Andy Slagle said. “(Adam) Larrimore really has been a big power-hitter for us throughout the past three years and he just came through big for us once again.
“We’ve been more of a situational hitting team this year, getting singles, doubles at the right time without focusing mostly on power hitting.”
The Raiders went with a committee of pitchers during the game, with Shawn Ray, Logan Rice, Todd Caldwell and D.W. Whitson all seeing time on the mound. The pitching committee shared a 10-strikeout effort throughout seven innings.
“We’ve got a lot of experienced pitchers in our lineup, which will be big going into the playoffs,” Slagle said. “They’ve all had that experience under their belts and we can just about throw any guy during any night.”
The Raiders held the Colts to only three hits during the contest, which impressed the Raiders’ skipper.
“We held them pretty well,” Slagle said. “We didn’t give up many hits against one of the better hitting teams in the league, which is always a great thing.”
Caldwell, Ray and Slagle all had two hits during the game.
The Raiders will be seeking out a third straight Greene County Adult Baseball League title during the playoffs. Slagle knows his team has got what it takes to make it a three-peat.
“We just need to continue what we’ve been able to do,” he added. “We’ve got a strong lineup, good hitting and a strong core of pitchers. Our lineup stacks up as one of the best in the league.”
The Raiders picked up their eleventh win of the season on Tuesday, July 17, against the Greeneville Express by the score of 4-2 in Afton.
Slagle picked up the walk-off run against the Express, knocking in the final run to pull ahead.
“It’s always big to pick up a win against your rivals like that,” he said. “They gave us a great game during the night.”