Motlow Baseball’s season end with a loss to Vol State on Wednesday

the 2023 Motlow Bucks
The Motlow Bucks end the season against Vol State. They finished 2023 with a winning record for the seventh straight year. (Photo Provided)

GALLATIN, Tenn. — The Motlow Bucks dropped a 6-4 decision to the host team Volunteer State on Wednesday, ending the Bucks season in the TCCAA/Region VII Tournament in Gallatin.

Motlow (26-22, 13-13) advanced through the play-in round with a 10-4 win over Jackson State on Sunday. The Bucks then lost to Chattanooga State 6-2 on Tuesday, dropping them into the elimination bracket.

Volunteer State 6 – Motlow 4

Things started well for Motlow against Volunteer State. Starting pitcher Jake Gulley was perfect through two innings, but the Bucks didn’t generate any early offense. The Pioneers scored two runs in the third and three more in the fourth, chasing Gulley from the mound.

The Bucks began chipping away at the lead. John Hale hit a solo home run in the fourth inning, and Irvin Hernandez added a solo shot in the sixth to cut the lead to 5-2. Hale drove in two more runs with a double in the eighth, scoring J.B. Bell and Tucker Allen, and the Pioneers’ lead was one 5-4.

Volunteer State added an insurance run in the bottom of the inning, and Motlow was unable to match the two-run deficit in the ninth.

Hale went 3-4 and drove in three runs while scoring one. Motlow collected six hits, with Kaleb Valdez, Hernandez, and Allen getting the other three. Gulley pitched three innings and took the loss, allowing four runs. Griffin Meeker was strong in relief, pitching five innings and allowing just four hits and one earned run.

Chattanooga State 6 – Motlow 2

Motlow starting pitcher Nicholas Holbrook worked out of multiple jams in the early innings, but once again, the Bucks’ offense couldn’t produce any early runs. The Tigers broke through in the fourth, scoring three runs, and added to their lead with two more in the sixth and one in the seventh.

The Bucks managed five hits, including an RBI triple by Jackson Cauthron. Hernandez, Valdez, Julius Scearce, and Allen had the other hits for Motlow. Holbrook pitched six innings, allowing four earned runs with nine strikeouts. Carson Cheek pitched the final two innings, giving up one run.

Motlow 10 – Jackson State 4

The Bucks rolled into the play-in game with their bats on fire, building a 9-2 lead by the end of the fourth inning. Tate Vanhooser homered for Motlow and went 2-3 with three runs scored. Hernandez, Hale, Cauthron, and Gabe Sibert each had two hits, with Valdez scoring three runs and Hale two.

Gulley got the start on the mound for Motlow, pitching two innings and giving up a run. Ryder Morey pitched the final seven innings to get the win, scattering seven hits with four strikeouts.

The Bucks finish the season with a winning record for the seventh year in a row. Follow the Bucks at and @motlowsports on Twitter. •

{The Lynchburg Times is an independently-owned, community newspaper located in Lynchburg, Tennessee the home of The Jack Daniel Distillery. We focus on public service, non-partisan, rural journalism. We cover the Metro Moore County government, local tourism, Moore County schools, high school sports, Motlow State Community College, as well as whiskey industry news and regional and state stories that affect our readers.}