By Ashlee Mullis
The Cougars traveled to Tunstall to take on the Trojans in the second round of the Piedmont District Tournament and were shut out 9-0.
“Unfortunately, we didn’t have the offensive showing at Tunstall we had at Franklin County, only picking up one hit by McCray Sawyers over seven innings,” Coach Tal Swails said. “Tunstall Starter Josh White completely shut us down going the whole way, allowing only one hit striking out 11 while giving up only one walk. He was impressive from the first pitch of the game to the last.”
Sophomore Lane Taylor took the mound for the Cougars and put in a fantastic performance over four 2/3 innings, only giving up one run going in to the bottom of the fifth. In that half inning, Taylor got two quick outs followed by a misplayed ball and a walk. At that point, the game started to go south.
With runners on first and second, a blooper between second and right field resulted in a collision between Cougar players, causing a triple and scoring two runs. From there, the Trojans ended the inning, adding three additional runs to extend their lead to 6-0. They added three more runs in the sixth, bringing the final score to 9-0, Trojans.
“The final (score) was not indicative of the game. If we make that play in the bottom of the fifth, they don’t score; we go into the sixth with the game still 1-0. In a 1-0 game, anything can happen. In a 6-0 game, with Josh White absolutely dealing, we made things really tough on ourselves,” Swails said.
“I’m proud of this Cougar Baseball team and especially proud of my four seniors: Colby Vernon, Josh Cockram, Landon Augustine, and Tanner Epperson. I know this wasn’t the season they wanted, but I can say for sure, that at no point did this bunch quit. They battled through some unbelievable adversity, critical injuries, and not to mention the biggest hurdle — inexperience, and they absolutely improved throughout the season. I am confident that we have established a foundation that we can begin to build upon and with the experience we bring back next year, seven returning starters, the future looks bright. I am excited about the future of PC Baseball,” Swails said.