Photo slideshow: Tates Creek defeats Breckinridge County in state baseball semifinals
Lexington’s last baseball team still playing is one win away from a state championship.
Tates Creek defeated Breckinridge County, 5-1, in the semifinals of the Whitaker Bank/KHSAA State Baseball Tournament Saturday morning. The Commodores awaited the winner between McCracken County and Trinity, whose game started the first semifinal.
Chandler Workman got the win after going four innings for the Commodores, who reached the state final for the first time since 1990. Workman allowed four hits and walked three before he gave the ball to Grant Stone, who surrendered two hits over the final three frames.
“I had to go out there and throw the game as good as I could,” Workman said. “It was a big stage, but we came through. I can’t believe it. It’s crazy. We made it, we made it.”
Breckinridge County generated significant threats early, but saw a rundown end its opening at-bat 10 feet shy from home plate and a double play nullify a no-outs, bases-loaded opportunity in the second inning.
A misplayed ball in shallow center field, ruled as double for Mason Gentry, allowed Trenton Taylor to scurry from first base all the way home to give Tates Creek a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second. The Commodores quickly coughed it up; Brock Lucas walked and then advanced from home on a high pick-off toss to first followed immediately by another to third to tie the game in the top of the third.
Tates Creek took control for good in the bottom: a Noah Blythe single was sandwiched between two hit batters to load the bases. Blayne Deaton, an Indiana commit, singled to put the Commodores back up by a run before Stone drew a two-out walk to make it 3-1.
“Errors happen,” Deaton said. “We just gotta bounce back and that’s what we did. The first two innings we didn’t hit the ball very well and then when the top of our lineup came back up in the third inning, we had already seen him so we knew what was coming and we were just on him.”
Both teams went 1-2-3 in the fourth. Braxton Carman drew a walk to lead off the fifth inning for Breckinridge but Creek retired the next three. The Commodores added insurance on their next trip on RBI singles from Eli Tencza and Stone, and Breckinridge County left two baserunners on through the remainder.
Tates Creek has won three state titles, its last coming in 1986.