High School Sports

How Green Sea Floyds baseball fared in a must-win state championship game

For The Sun News

A dream season for Green Sea Floyds baseball team ended in disappointing fashion on Tuesday, as McBee celebrated its second consecutive SCHSL Class A baseball championship, dispatching the home Trojans 7-3. McBee defeated Green Sea Floyds 2-0 in Saturday’s first game of the best-of-3 series to make Tuesday’s contest a must-win for the Trojans.

From the beginning of the game, McBee put pressure on Green Sea Floyds to play sound defense and make pitches in big moments. The Panthers scored a run in the first inning, three in the second and two more in the third inning to all but bury the Trojans. At the 4-0 mark in the second inning, Green Sea Floyds showed fight, as Lucas McDowell knocked a two-run homer over the left center-field fence to cut the Panther advantage in half, but eight walks surrendered by the Trojans and timely hitting by McBee led to an unsurmountable deficit.

McBee pitcher Clark Kirkley pitched a complete game, mixing speeds often to keep the Trojan hitters off balance and using an expanding strike zone to his advantage throughout the contest. While he gave up some hard contact, only McDowell’s big fly came around to hurt him.

Green Sea Floyds had opportunities to cut into the Panther lead, none better than a bases-loaded, one-out chance in the third inning with the score at 6-2. The Trojans were unable to bring home any runners after a popup in foul ground and strikeout ended the frame. The Trojans wouldn’t seriously threaten for the remainder of the game.

After watching another program hoist a championship trophy on their home field, the Trojans were left with a bitter feeling, something to carry with them through the offseason.

“The season they put together, even though it didn’t end the way they wanted it to, it was emotionally draining year. Between rainouts, canceled games, injuries, when it came down to crunch time the boys performed,” said Green Sea Floyds coach Derek Martin. “That was a heck of a playoff run, we just ran into an experienced group that has done it before.”

McBee snagged its fourth baseball state title with the win, good for most in Chesterfield County, and had plans to continue celebrating well into Tuesday night with a welcoming party waiting at the end of a 100-minute bus ride.

For Green Sea Floyds, much of the team won a state championship with the football team and felt the same hunger on the diamond, only to fall just short of their goal. While the season didn’t end the way the Trojans hoped, Martin has witnessed the continued growth of his program over the past few seasons and expects to continue to ascend.

“The last three years we’ve built. We’ve played for a district championship, won a district championship, played in the Lower State and this year we won the Lower State bracket,” he said. “We’ve got six, seven, eight juniors that should have that experience that they’ve (McBee) got this year (coming back for us) next year. … I think the fellas understand now what it will take to win one.”