American Legion Post 77 baseball coach Jack Murphy has gone though regular seasons with zero or one losses before. And upon entering the state playoffs his teams have fallen without getting very deep in the postseason tournament.
Thursday the 25-1 2012 version of Post 77 baseball entered the state tournament against Peachtree City, a team it had defeated several times already this season.
Just a couple innings in, Murphy's fear of an unsuccessful post season was erased as Rockdale hit its way to a 19-5 victory.
"We started out like gangbusters. We jumped out way in front but couldn't seem to put them away," Murphy said. "We would have liked to 10-run them in about seven innings, but we did it in eight. They were pesky, every time we tried to put them down; they came back and scored a run or two."
Rockdale sent 11 batters to the plate in the top off the first inning, scoring seven runs on four hits, three walks and an error.
Former Eastside standout Keith Buckhault began a very good day with a three-run double.
Cole Murphy and Fred Williams added RBI's in the first inning, with the last run being scored on an error.
Post 77 added four more runs in the second inning to go up 11-0.
"Our players were feeling real good about everything," Murphy said.
In the bottom of the third, Peachtree City got to Rockdale's starting pitcher Adam Sunstrom, drawing two walks and hitting a single. Sunstrom pitched three innings, striking out four and walking three.
In the fourth inning, Rockdale regained its 10-run lead, scoring three runs. Robert Bell hit at wo-run home run and Buckhault had another RBI double in the frame.
Rockdale however, couldnn't put an early end to the game after going up 14-2 thanks to a two-run inning by Peachtree City off of reliever Cole Hamilton.
Cody Wofford took the mound for Rockdale in the seventh inning put gave up a triple and a sacrifice fly to make it 14-5.
Rockdale finished it off in the top of the eighth with five runs. Randy Loew started it off with a single and Cody Wofford hit a three-run home run. Buckhault tallied another double, coming home on Murphy's RBI single. Jake Wright then drove in Cole for the final score.
Despite the big win, Murphy is still looking for more as Rockdale needs three more victories for the state title.
"The thing that was disappointing to me is that we didn't continue to build on our lead," Murphy said. "We kind of went into a lull there in the fifth, sixth and seventh when we needed to put more runs on the board. When they got their fifth run, the guys seemed to get serious again."
Rockdale will return to action against Douglasville at 10 a.m. Saturday in Loganville.