by Tom Callahan

GAINESVILLE, GA - Down by a run on the road the Columbus Chatt-a-Hoots score twice in the eighth inning to rally and beat the Gainesville Gol’Diggers to move to 6-1 and sole posession of first place in the SunBelt Baseball League.

Connor O’Neal (2-for-3, 2 hits, 2 walks, 2 runs scored) led off the inning with a double to right field, but successive strikeouts to Ellis Yohn and Carter Schmitt threatened to leave him stranded at second base. Instead, the inning would continue with a walk to Walt McConnell and then O’Neal would score on an error by shortstop Kameron Guidry that allowed Sean Darnell to reach base safely and put McConnel on third. McConnell would then score on a wild pitch to give the Hoots the lead for good.

Columbus also had a big inning in the sixth, scoring four times to go from trailing 3-0 to leading 4-3, but the resilient Gol’Diggers fought back with single runs in the bottom of the sixth and seventh innings to take the lead before the Hoots big inning in the eighth.

Trey Sanders notched the win in his first appearance of the season, working one inning while giving up one earned run, one hit, walking one and striking out one. Connor Trepanier got the save working both the eighth and ninth allowing no hits or runs, one walk and two strikeouts. Trepanier also ended a scoring threat in the bottom of the eighth when he picked Guidry off second for the final out of the frame.

Kayne Jinks took the loss for Gainesville in just two-thirds of an inning, allowing one run on no hits, walking one and striking out two.

The same two teams are back at it on Wednesday night at 6:35 pm. Radio coverage can be heard on Hoots flagship station 106.9 Really Rocks and along the Chatt-a-Hoots radio network.