Here’s a closer look at Columbus’ loss to Troup at home on Tuesday.
The Blue Devils battled into the ninth inning, but ultimately fell in extras 5-4.
It would be easy to pick the moment when Troup scored the go-ahead run, but I think the real turning point was when Columbus failed to get a runner home when it loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the eighth inning. Troup got out of the jam, came back and scored in the ninth and put Columbus away in the bottom of the inning.
Troup’s Jacob Ozley was 3 for 4 with a double and two RBIs in the win. He was a difference-maker all game.
Sometimes key decisions aren’t good or bad—they just impact the outcome of the game. With the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the eighth inning, Columbus coach Bobby Howard elected to attempt a squeeze. The runner on third, Hunter Swilling, broke for the plate, but Columbus failed to get the bunt down. Swilling was tagged out, and the inning was soon over.
What it means
Columbus, which is trying for a fourth consecutive state championship, is in a tight battle for playoff seeding. It appears to be in fine shape to make the playoffs, but any seed, first through fourth, is still on the table.
Columbus has now lost to each of the other teams among the region’s top four—Alexander, Carrollton and Troup.
“Shaw is our most important game now.” –Columbus coach Bobby Howard, referring to the Blue Devils’ next game.
David Mitchell, 706-571-8571; Follow David on Twitter @leprepsports.