Valiant effort comes up just short as Woodland splits doubleheader with 8th-ranked Calhoun
With their playoff backs to the wall, Woodland gave a valiant effort Friday night hosting 8th-ranked Calhoun in a doubleheader, but the Wildcats’ failure to sweep the two games eliminated the Woodland from playoff contention.
Woodland won the opening game 7-4 and had the potential game-tying runners on base in the bottom of the seventh before falling in the second game, 7-5.
Woodland needed to sweep both games of the doubleheader Friday and have Cass lose both games at Cartersville for the Wildcats to remain alive in the playoff chase.
WOODLAND 7, CALHOUN 4
In the opening game, Woodland scored four times in the bottom of the fifth to take the lead and held on for a 7-4 win.
Drew Billings, who took the mound in relief for the Wildcats in the top of the fifth, picked up the pitching win. Billings worked a scoreless two and two-thirds innings allowing only one hit and one walk. He struck out one.
Woodland starting pitcher Peyton Posey worked the first four and one-third innings. He allowed four earned runs on six hits and a pair of walks. Posey fanned one.
Calhoun led 4-1 heading to the bottom of the fifth but the Wildcats scored four runs in the fifth and two more in the sixth to secure the win.
Scotty Smith had two hits including a double and two RBIs to help lead the Woodland offense. Ayden Ray finished with two hits including a double and one RBI. Carter Heath contributed a double and two RBIs. Billings added two RBIs.
CALHOUN 7, WOODLAND 5
Calhoun took an early 4-0 lead in Friday’s second game at Woodland but the Wildcats challenged the Yellow Jackets to the very end before falling, 7-5.
Woodland narrowed the Calhoun lead to 4-3 in the bottom of the second inning and matched single runs with the Yellow Jackets in the fifth inning to make the score 5-4.
The Wildcats tied the game 5-5 in the bottom of the sixth but Calhoun scored twice in the top of the seventh for a 7-5 advantage.
Singles by Jacob Gravett and Peyton Posey put the potential tying runs on base for Woodland in the bottom of the seventh with only one out but Calhoun pitcher Braden Saunders recorded back-to-back strikeouts to squelch the threat and secure a two-run win.
Saunders (5.2 IP, 2R, 1ER, 6H, 2BB, 11K) pitched the final five and two-thirds innings for Calhoun to earn the pitching victory. He struck out eleven.
Ayden Ray (2 IP, 2ER, 4H, 3BB, 5K) was tagged with the pitching loss in relief of starter Scotty Smith (5 IP, 5R, 1ER, 8H, 4BB, 2K).
Hagan Banks, Dante Morton, and Parker Lester combined for seven hits and four RBIs for Calhoun.
Posey finished with two hits and one RBI for the Wildcats. Trevor Montgomery had two hits including a double. Smith doubled and drove in a run. Ayden Ray and Gravett contributed one hit each. Chase Carson drove in a run.
The doubleheader split leaves Calhoun 18-8 on the season and 10-5 in Region 7-AAAAA.
Woodland (9-19, 5-10) will close out the 2021 season at home next Friday against Haralson County at 5:55 p.m.