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Before the district started, 10-year-old All-star head coach Dwayne Dillow said he wanted to avoid the slow start the team got off to last year as 9-year-olds.
When the team took the field Wednesday night at Spencer County, the slow start was a thing of the past. Shelby County put up three runs in the first and three more in the third to take a commanding lead and beat Scott County 7-2 in the first round of the double elimination tournament.
"We got our bats started real quick and our defense was good and held them," Dillow said. "We faced that same pitcher last year as 9-year-olds and couldn't hit him, but we came out early and got things going quickly and the kids ran the bases really well."
Bryson Dillow led the way offensively for Shelby County, going 3-4 with two run-scoring triples and Lucas Whitehouse also had a triple on his way to a two-hit night and Jake Coleman also added an RBI triple in the third.
"Overall, it was a really good team effort," Dillow said. "The guys have been really focused for this game. I believe Scott County won the district last year, and the kids have been talking about this game for two weeks. All they've said is 'We have to beat Scott,' 'Let's beat Scott.' Everything clicked and the kids did exactly what they wanted to."
Will McDonald got the win for Shelby County, throwing into the fifth inning.
"He did a great job," Dillow said. "We just wanted to pull him out to save his arm a little for later on in the tournament."
Before the tournament, Dillow said the "sky is the limit" for this team if they got their bats going, and Wednesday's win showed just that.
"This was a big, big team effort, and that's what we were striving for," he said. "We got some good pitching and a few big hits, but really everybody contributed, everybody hit the ball hard and everybody played solid defense. We played as one unit and as long as we do that we'll be fine."
The team will now face the winner of the Spencer County/Henry County game on Friday at 6:30 p.m. The winner of that game will advance to Sunday's 2 p.m. championship game, and the loser will play Saturday at 3 p.m. for a chance at the title.