Bulldogs swept at Columbia Academy
A washout on Monday in Cornersville set up a doubleheader at Columbia Academy (CA) on Tuesday, giving the team able to sweep the twin bill the upper hand in the District 12-AA standings.
Columbia Academy won both games, eking out a 4-3 extra inning win in game one before run-ruling Cornersville 18-0 in game two.
The 18-0 win by CA was the largest margin of victory by either long-time rival, dating back to 2003.
Cornersville staff ace David Looney went to the hill in game one with an undefeated mark on the season, but the Columbia State Community College prospect failed to gain a decision after leaving the mound after seven innings of work with the game tied 3-3.
"I know I didn't have a good game," said Looney. "Coach (Ben Putnam) thought I threw a pretty decent game, but I know from what I threw this summer and what I am capable of that tonight was one of my lower games this year."
Looney (4-1) struck out 15 CA batters in the contest and gave up two earned runs on four hits, while struggling with his control at times that turned in to a season-high six bases on balls.
"I get a lot of movement of movement on my fastball that I couldn't control it like I would have wanted to tonight," said Looney. "I have not had a good career at this field and the one win I have here, CA beat themselves and we just capitalized on the mistakes."
On the other side of the field, the Cornersville namesakes sent Scott Lentz to the mound for the game one start and he went the distance for the eight-inning victory, giving up one earned run on nine hits, while striking out three and walking one.
Lentz tossed a 1-2-3 top of the eighth inning, setting up the game winning RBI base hit by Will McCall that scored Price Martin from third base.
Martin had led off the bottom of the eighth with a base and went to third on a bunt single by Billy Thurman.
Cornersville leadoff man Tate Lowery went 3-4 in the game with an RBI and a run scored, while Chance Dyer managed two hits and an RBI.
Looney (1-4), Aaron Fox (1-4), Graham Duke (1-4, RS), and Hunter Talley (1-2) all had one hit apiece in the game for Cornersville.
Duke went to the mound for Cornersville in game two and the eighth-grader was one pitch away from battling out of a first inning two-on, two-out jam when an infield error allowed two runs to score.
Cornersville never recovered as they committed four errors in the contest.
Columbia Academy scored four runs in the second, seven in the third, two in the fourth, and four in the fifth inning to seal the win.
Chapel Hill resident and Forrest transfer Alex Huey started on the mound for CA and the freshman lefty went all five innings in the run-rule win, giving up four hits, while walking one Cornersville batter in the game.
"I was just ready to pound that strike zone once we got ahead, but I struggled a little early getting the breaking ball down and once I got it, it started working," said Huey. "I was trying to keep it low in the strike zone and let my defense make plays."
Asked about how he felt about beating a Marshall County team with a lot of guys he knows, Huey said, "I have been friends with Graham Duke for a long time, we have always been real tight, so we are friends everywhere except the ball field."
JD Crabtree (1-1, BB), Fox (1-2), Talley (1-2), and Ben Taylor had the hits off Huey.
Cornersville (9-5, 6-2) has four district games remaining with two game each versus Richland (7-1, 4-1) and Culleoka (4-7, 3-2), while Columbia Academy (11-2, 7-0) has two games versus Mt. Pleasant (3-6, 1-5) and Hampshire (1-6, 0-6).
"We have to go four wins from here," said Looney "I had a speech with the guys and told them we are about to get to some real baseball and we have to get better if we want to get past the district tournament. We have a lot of young guys and we have to get everybody on board for what it takes."