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.