Wild­cats end Tigers’ sea­son with late rally in Game 3


Ring­gold head coach Brent Tucker was over­come with emo­tions fol­low­ing his team’s 8-5 loss in Thurs­day’s Class AAA sec­ond-round elim­i­na­tion game against West­min­ster.

His team was emo­tional as well.

The Tigers, who gave up a three-run lead in the sixth in­ning that saw six runs scored on four hits, col­lec­tively just sat in their dugout as a team fol­low­ing the Wild­cats’ cel­e­bra­tion and post game speeches.

“No­body is leav­ing,” Tucker said. “They love base­ball. They love each other so much.”

While the Blue-and­White failed to ad­vance to the next round, Tucker said their sea­son was any­thing but a loss.

“They taught me stuff this year,” he said. “They taught me stuff...you don’t say that much.”

Tucker said “there are no words to de­scribe the lead­er­ship” of his play­ers and the chal­lenges they over­came as a team this year.

“The lead­er­ship of the se­niors is ab­so­lutely in­cred­i­ble,” he said. “The bond that team has is some­thing you don’t get any­more.”

Tucker said this was truly a “throw­back bunch.”

“They were truly for each other,” he said. “Where the bond hap­pened was from the tough times. They just said, ‘ Hey we’re not go­ing to let this hap­pen.’”

Tucker said each one of his play­ers was part of some­thing spe­cial this year and he would never for­get this sea­son as a coach.

“They ran off 17, 18 wins in a row and they are leav­ing as re­gion cham­pi­ons,” he said. “I’m very, very proud of them for that ac­com­plish­ment.

“You al­ways ask play­ers to leave ev­ery­thing on the field. I’ll prom­ise you it was all left on the field this year. They gave it ev­ery­thing they had all year long ... I love th­ese guys to death and I’m so proud of them.”

Ring­gold fell be­hind 2-0 af­ter giv­ing up solo runs in the first and sec­ond innings.

A three-run in­ning in their sec­ond at bat and a two-run homer off the bat of No. 9 hit­ter, Jor­dan Ran­som, gave the Tigers a 5-2 lead.

West­min­ster re­liever Rankin Wor­ley kept the Tigers off bal­ance the rest of the day, al­low­ing only two base run­ners the re­main­der of the game.

Se­nior pitcher Zach Mor­ris, who al­lowed just one hit in the pre­vi­ous three innings, sur­ren­dered con­sec­u­tive hits to Aar­mon Painter and Con­nor Stutts to lead off the fourth in­ning. From there it was all down­hill for Ring­gold.

Painter scored to cut the lead to two-runs.

Dal­ton Light laced an RBI sin­gle with two outs and Blake Hu­ber was hit by a pitch to load the bases for Robert DeGo­lian in the No. 9 spot. DeGo­lian hit a sin­gle into right field that was mis­played, al­low­ing all three run­ners to score.

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