CLEVELAND, Tenn. — Bumper-to-bumper traffic through Atlanta or no, Walker Valley baseball coach Joe Shamblin probably didn't let it interfere with his mindset Tuesday. It was brightened for the team's trip to a Charleston, S.C., tournament by a two-game sweep of rival Cleveland.
Following Monday night's 4-0 victory behind Bobby Towne, Walker Valley got another pitching gem Tuesday afternoon in a 7-0 victory over the Blue Raiders. Junior Jared Broome struck out four, walked one and hit another but allowed just four baserunners in a two-hit shutout.
Only one Blue Raider, Reed Allison, got as far as second base, and he was left at third when Broome struck out two of the next three batters.
"Awesome, awesome performance," Shamblin said of Broome's 81-pitch day.
The fact that it was against one of the Mustangs' two in-county rivals made it that much better.
"There's so much at stake when you're playing Cleveland or Bradley -- bragging rights, getting the kids -- and to get a sweep in the district [5-AAA] is always very important."
It might be more so this year with the teams voting to move away from the best two-of-three format they've used the last couple of years and returning to a double-elimination postseason event.
The win gave the Mustangs a 5-1 district record with series remaining against Bradley Central, McMinn County and Soddy-Daisy.
Broome also singled in a run. The Mustangs' Chris Caffrey was the only player on the field to get multiple hits, and he had an RBI with one of his two doubles. Towne added a two-run double and Matthew Simmons had a run-scoring double as well.
Ward Gossett is an assistant sports editor and writer for the Times Free Press. Ward has a long history in Chattanooga journalism. He actually wrote a bylined story for the Chattanooga News-Free Press as a third-grader. He Began working part-time there in 1968 and was hired full time in 1970. Ward now covers high school athletics, primarily football, wrestling and baseball and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga wrestling. Over a 40-year career, he has covered ...