DOUGLASVILLE -- The Rockdale Post 77 American Legion baseball team made an early statement in the POW/MIA Tournament.
Jake Wright had four hits, Keith Buckhault added three and Post 77 cruised to a 16-4 victory in five innings over Peachtree City Post 50 on Friday. Eric Smith tossed a five-inning no-hitter in a 12-0 win over Sports Tech in a second game Friday.
Smith struck out eight and surrendered just two walks and a hit batter as no Sports Tech runner reached second base in the 63-pitch effort. The Post 77 offense had plenty of support for Smith as Buckhault delivered a double, triple and three RBIs. Cole Murphy was a home run short of the cycle and drove in three runs.
"We're hitting the ball good as a team right now, (but) it's all going to boil down to our pitching," said Rockdale coach Jack Murphy. "We're missing some guys (on the mound). We got a couple guys down, coming out of high school with sore elbows and stuff. We're hoping they get well. Eric's come in a couple times and really helped us out. Eric's been really kind of dominant on the mound for us."
Against Peachtree City, Post 77 starter Josh Smith went three innings and allowed one earned run to pick up the win. Jake Wright had four hits and Buckhault added three in the rout.
"Can't complain," said Murphy, whose team is coming off a state title in 2012. "I don't know yet if we're as good as last year because that was a special season last year and it's tough to duplicate what we had last year. Things look pretty good right now."
Rockdale, 4-0 on the young season, played Loganville Post 233 on Saturday in a game that ended too late for this edition.