7th inning homer not quite enough for Tigers

Published 7:47 pm Tuesday, March 20, 2012

By James Dubuisson | Special to the Advertiser

Chilton County High School fell to Alabama Christian Academy 7-6 on Tuesday in its first game as 2012 Chilton County Baseball Tournament champion.

CCHS opened up the scoring in the bottom of the first inning after Craig Headley hit a run-scoring double. Headley would later score in the inning off an ACA error.

The Tigers led 2-0 going into the top of the second.

The Eagles responded with two runs in their half of the second inning off two RBI singles.

The game was tied 2-2 until the top of the fourth inning. ACA scored three in the inning off of a pair of doubles and an error. The Eagles led 5-2 after four innings of baseball.

The Tigers rallied in the fifth and sixth innings. They scored two runs in the bottom of the fifth to cut the lead down to 5-4. J.D. Minor hit an RBI single in the sixth to tie the game at 5-5.

The game was not tied for long. The leadoff hitter got on with a single. ACA’s Patrick Cox was next up to bat. He laid down a sacrifice bunt, but the throw was mishandled and Cox was safe at first. The next batter grounded out.

The Tigers decided to intentionally walk the next batter, which loaded the bases. The runner from third scored on a passed ball error. CCHS was forced to intentionally walk the next batter to load up the bases again. The Eagles starting pitcher, Matt Self, stepped up to bat with the bases loaded. Self would help his own cause by hitting an RBI single to put ACA up 7-5. CCHS would stop the bleeding with a 5-2-1 double play to end the top half of the inning.

The Tigers’ first batter of the seventh inning grounded out. Then, Headley stepped up to the plate. With a 1-1 count, Headley drove the next pitch to deep centerfield. The ball carried just over the raised part of the centerfield fence with the sign marking 365 feet.

After a Tiger strikeout for the second out of the inning, Trevor Thomas reached second after an array of errors in the infield. ACA’s Self hit the Tigers’ next batter. Self was able to get control and seal his complete game victory with a strikeout with Tigers’ runners stranded on first and second.

The Tigers’ offense was led by Headley’s 3-for-4 performance. He fell a triple shy of the cycle as he hit a home run and a double, driving in two runs and scoring three runs himself.

Cameron Cummings also contributed, going 2-for-4 with two runs scored.