“We are very thankful and very blessed,” Phillips said. “God has blessed us with a good season and the ability to still be able to play this game. There are eight teams left in 1A baseball, so a lot more teams are sitting at home wishing they were in our spot. We are very fortunate and blessed to be here. Hopefully, we can keep that going.”
Playing at home has been a huge advantage for the Wolves in the 2012 postseason. Fayetteville swept both playoff series in front of their home crowd. Phillips said his team is going to have to make some changes in their routine, but they will be ready to play.
“Being on the road is different,” Phillips said. “We are used to our home routines, we are used to our big crowds, our fans cheering us on and plus we are used to our field. Going on the road is going to be different. I think we will still have a big crowd to follow us and we are going to have a good time. I think we can go down and if we play like we have been playing, we can come home with a victory. Hitting the ball and not making mistakes is the key to winning any baseball game.”
Maplesville (15-13) swept Verbena 9-5, 8-5 in the second round of the playoffs. The Red Devils used strong pitching and hitting to beat Verbena after coming off a bye in the first round.
“Maplesville has won a couple of big games,” Phillips said. “You can’t take them lightly. They beat Montevallo which is a 3A team that is doing very well and in the third round of the playoffs as well. I think Montevallo only has six losses this year and one of them is to Maplesville. Coach Shanks has done good with them coaching them up and teaching them the fundamentals of baseball. They are going to be prepared and they are going to be ready for us.”
Zach McGrady has been dominant in his two postseason outings. The junior hasn’t allowed any runs in 14 innings of action. Phillips is also proud of the way Justin Ricks and Steven Brasher.
“Zach McGrady has been lights out in the playoffs,” Phillips said. “If I am not mistaken in the playoffs he has given up two hits, no runs in 14 innings. He has two complete games shut outs, that is very strong for us. Justin Ricks has hit the ball well for us in the playoffs, so has Steven Brasher. We have to keep their bats going along with Jared Williamson. He has made good contact.”
Not making errors has also played a huge part in the Wolves success this season.
“Defensively, I can’t say enough about our whole defense,” Phillips said. “Our defense is doing good right now when the ball is hit to them. We are not making mistakes. Last week I think our second baseman Mason Vick had about 10 put outs. Ten balls hit to him in two games compared to my third baseman that may only had one ball hit to him in two games. We all made the plays and we were all ready for it when the ball was hit to us.”
Contact LaVonte Young at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @LYoung_DHSports.