BRIGHTON – The Arlington Tigers are one victory away from the State Baseball Tournament.
Monday night the District 14-3A runners-up traveled to Tipton County to take on the Brighton Cardinals in the Region 7-3A Baseball Tournament semifinals.
The winner would earn a spot in Wednesday’s Region championship game and advance to Friday’s Sectionals. The loser would see a season of promise come to an end.
The Tigers used a solid pitching performance from senior Dalton Fowler to earn a 3-0 decision over the District 13-3A champs, the Cardinals.
Arlington advanced to take on the Bartlett Panthers in the Regional title game. The Panthers were 8-1 victors over the Dyer County Choctaws Monday night in Freeman Park.
The Tigers were defeated by the Panthers earlier this month in the District 14-3A championship game. Before Arlington could set up the rematch with Bartlett, the Tigers had to overcome one of the best teams in West Tennessee in Brighton.
The Cardinals entered Monday night as district regular-season and tournament champs. Brighton even set a school record with an 18-0 start in 2018.
Fowler knew he had to lock in early to defeat the Cardinals.
“It was a good team win,” the senior ace said. “We played defense really well. We all just stayed together as a team. We stayed in the middle, kept it even cool the whole game. We had our ups and downs, but we just stayed in the middle the whole game.”
Fowler said his nerves were calm once he stepped on the mound at Brighton Baseball Field.
“I knew I was going to come out and trust my defense and just fill it up,” he said. “I just want to give my team the best chance to win this ball game.”
Arlington scored in the top of first inning on a RBI single to take a 1-0 lead. The Tigers added couple of insurance runs in the sixth inning to secure victory over Brighton.
Now the Tigers have a guaranteed spot in Friday’s Sectional round. Winners of those games advance to Murfreesboro for next week’s State tournament.
“Just go out there and try not to do too much,” Fowler concluded. “We have to stay even and just trust one another. We have to keep confidence to know we are prepared.”
THOMAS SELLERS JR. is the editor of The Millington Star and sports editor for Journal West 10 Media. Contact him at (901) 433-9138 or email@example.com.