Late Rally Not Enough, as Columbus Falls to Alpharetta in Series Opener 6-5
COLUMBUS, GA.- The Chatt-a-Hoots (5-8) opened up the month of July with an opportunity to gain some momentum. Instead, the visiting Alpharetta Aviators (6-5) held off an eighth-inning rally to hand Columbus the 6-5 loss.
The Hoots kicked off the scoring in the bottom of the third inning with an RBI double from Cole Mathis (College of Charleston), scoring Zac Rice (Chipola). Columbus would add to the lead in the fourth, as right-fielder Mack Williams sent a home run over the outfield wall to give the Hoots a 2-0 lead.
Alpharetta would answer with six unanswered runs to take the lead 6-2, including four in the sixth inning and one each in innings seven and eight. Columbus answered right back with a three-run rally in the eighth to cut the deficit to 6-5 on an RBI single from Henry Daniels (ABAC) and a two-run RBI single from Conner O’Neal (Georgia State).
In the bottom of the ninth Columbus brought the winning run to the plate with only one out after a double from Matt McDade (Columbus State). However, a strikeout and a successful pick off ended the Hoots chances for a comeback win.
Left-hander Daniel Holley (Tennessee Tech) provided another quality start for Columbus, going five shutout innings with just three hits allowed and six strikeouts. Reliever Timbo Trawick (Columbus State) was charged with the loss after recording just one out in the pivotal sixth inning and surrendering four runs.
Alpharetta saw their bullpen rise to the occasion, as Tyler McLoughlin (Emory) earned the victory in relief with 2 2/3 innings of shutout ball.
The Chatt-a-Hoots and the Aviators face off once again in a doubleheader on Saturday with first pitch of Game One starting at 1:05 PM ET. Game Two is estimated to start at 6:05 PM ET.