Jake Collum singled home Nathan Smith with the game winning, walk-off run to cap a three-run rally in the bottom of the seventh inning Tuesday night for a “chilling” Region 7AAAAA win on a frigid night at the Cass High School athletic complex.
Collum, who also started for the Colonels on the mound, had a four-RBI night with a 2-for-4 performance at the plate.
The Colonels trailed 7-4 going to the bottom of the sixth inning, but rallied for a single run in the sixth inning and three more in the seventh for a come-from-behind 8-7 victory.
Cody Johnson reached on an error by the Hornets’ shortstop to begin the final inning rally. Steven Spell walked and on a wild pitch, both baserunners moved up a base. After two strikeouts, Smith singled through the right side to drive home two runs that tied the game 7-7. Smith advanced on a passed ball and then Clay Means moved him to third base with an infield hit. Bailey Campbell was walked to load the bases and Collum was next to deliver the game-winning RBI.
Collum was also responsible for the Colonels’ run in the sixth inning. His sacrifice fly drove in Means, who had singled earlier in the frame.
Hiram took an early 5-0 lead with three runs in the third inning and two more in the fourth.
Cass narrowed the margin to 5-4 with four runs in the bottom of the fourth.
Three walks and a hit batsman plated the Colonels first run. Means then hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score another run. Following another walk, Collum lined a two-RBI single into left field.
Collum (3.1 IP, 5R, 2ER, 5H, 2BB, 7K) began the game on the mound for Cass. He was relieved in the fourth inning by Austin Pruett (3.2 IP, 2R, 1ER, 4H, 3BB, 5K) who picked up the pitching win.
In addition to Collum’s offense, Means was 2-for-4 with one RBI; Smith drove in three runs and scored twice with a hit and a walk; Spell and Campbell who were walked a combined six times, had one hit each.
Trent Parker, Levi Walker, and Colt Anderson combined for five hits and five RBIs for the Hornets.
The late offensive rally by the Colonels allowed them to overcome six defensive errors in the game. "We have to play better defense," said Cass head coach Adam Williams. "Without the mistakes defensively, we don't need that late rally. It is still good to come away with a win."
Hiram (2-11, 0-1) will host Cass in a rematch Wednesday at 5:55pm.
Cass improved to 8-6 overall and 1-0 in Region 7AAAAA. The Colonels also have a region game Friday at home against county-rival Woodland.