Briarwood dispatches Moody in first round of playoffs

The 2010 Briarwood Christian School baseball team features plenty of playoff veterans.

Freshman Daniel Robert isn’t among them.

Despite his youth, Robert couldn’t have asked for a better introduction to the Alabama High School Athletic Association Class 5A baseball playoffs as he led the Lions to a 10-1, 15-5 sweep of Moody in the first round April 16 at Jay D. Kynerd Field.

Robert went 3-for-3 at the plate with two doubles, a single and two RBIs in the Lions’ 10-1 win in the opener. He followed up that performance by going 3-for-3 with a home run, a triple, a single and three RBIs in Briarwood’s 15-5 victory in the nightcap.

Robert said his nerves were eased with each plate appearance.

“It was exciting and I was definitely nervous,” Robert said. “After the first hit it was definitely slowing down for me.”

First-year Briarwood head coach Steve Renfroe was impressed with Robert’s playoff debut.

“That’s a good night for anybody,” Renfroe said. “For a freshman in the playoffs for the first time, it’s really impressive.”

While Robert led the way at the plate, senior David Woods and junior Logan Crook took care of business on the mound for the Lions, who improved to 22-8 overall.

Woods improved to 8-1 after allowing only one earned run on five hits with six strikeouts in a complete game in the opener. The only damage for Woods was a fourth-inning solo homer, which was the first one he’s given up this season.

Crook ran his record to 5-1 after giving up five earned runs on four hits with four strikeouts and a walk in a five-inning complete game in the nightcap.

“It was a workman-like effort for both of them,” Renfroe said. “They battled.”

Woods had plenty of run support in the first game.

In addition to Robert’s 3-for-3 performance, Brett Conner finished 2-for-3 and drove in three runs.

Paul McKelvey went 2-for-4 and drove in four runs. Tanner Cunningham, Cole Pearson, Harrison Foster and Crook recorded one hit each.

In the second game, McKelvey finished 2-for-3 with a triple, a double and three RBIs.

Cunningham went 1-for-2 and drove in a run. Crook and Conner had an RBI single each.

Foster went 1-for-3 with a single. Pinch hitters Robby Hale and Dan Thomas each recorded a double. Thomas also drove in two runs.

The Lions will face Shelby County in the second round of the playoffs April 23-24.