‘Dogs oustedPublished 12:00am Saturday, May 3, 2014
CHILDERSBURG — Andalusia’s remarkable run in the postseason has come to an end.
The Bulldogs fell 2-1, 12-5 to Childersburg in the third round of the Alabama High School Athletic Association’s Class 4A state baseball playoffs on Friday night at Garland Justice Field.
AHS played stellar defense in the field in game one behind the arm of senior Justin Scherzinger, but a Tiger run in the bottom of the seventh gave the home team all the momentum in game two.
In the second game, CHS tallied 15 hits — 10 more than game one — and took advantage of some miscues by the Bulldogs.
“It is what it is,” AHS coach Tyler Dent said. “They’ve got a good ball team. They hit the ball well, that’s sure sure.
“We battled our tail off in the first game. We just caught a bad break there at the end. That was the same thing that happened to us and UMS-Wright (last week in the second round),” he said. “We caught a few bad breaks in the second game with three fly balls that should’ve been caught, but that’s baseball. A good team is going to take advantage of that, which they did.”
With a 7-5 lead going into the top of the seventh, CHS tacked on five runs to pull away any hope the Bulldogs had at coming back in the bottom of the frame.
Peyton Logan hit a two-run home run to lead the Tigers in the seventh.
Earlier in the game, CHS took a 7-5 lead in the top of the sixth on an RBI single from Tyler Jackson to score Reeves Brashear.
CHS bolted out to a 4-1 lead after the second inning on a three-run slammer from Mark Bentley, but the Bulldogs added four runs in the fourth to lead 5-4.
AHS senior Jud Rogers and Brandon Smith hit RBI singles; and senior Quinton Maddox hit a two-run double to right field.
Andalusia tied the game in the bottom of the first when Brayden Burkhardt scored on senior Daniel Henderson’s RBI single.
Henderson went 2-for-4; and Ross Graham went 2-for-3 to lead AHS.
When asked if he thought the team was flat after the tough game-one loss, Dent said he didn’t feel that way about them at all.
“Knowing that group of seniors, we weren’t flat,” he said. “We were kind of in a lull there in the early innings, but I thought we competed hard and we just got beat in the second game.”
Childersburg 2, Andalusia 1 (Game 1)
Jackson hit a walk-off single in the bottom of the seventh to help lift the Tigers to a 2-1 victory in the opener.
It was a back and forth affair between two good teams in a game that lasted just over an hour.
Andalusia struck first in the top if the first on a solo bomb from Maddox.
Behind another epic pitching performance from Scherzinger, the Bulldogs held CHS scoreless until the fifth, where William Donahoo hit a solo home run to tie it at 1-1.
In the bottom of the seventh, Jackson reached on an error between Maddox and Scherzinger and scored from second on the winning hit.
Andalusia senior catcher Ross Graham had the tag for the last out to send it into extras, but unfortunately dropped the ball after Jackson slid around from the inner part of the baseline.
Andalusia’s Grayson Campbell went 2-for-3 to lead the Bulldogs, who tallied five hits in the loss.
Scherzinger allowed two runs on five hits and struck out three while walking none in the complete game.
Zach Lightsey allowed one run on five hits and struck out seven for the win.
On the season in which the Bulldogs finished 22-12, Dent said there wasn’t much you could ask from these players.
“All you can ask for as a head coach is to get better throughout the season, and I think we did that,” Dent said.