Timing just isn’t on Central’s side.
The Yellow Jackets either had runners on when batters got out, or churned in hits with the bases clear and two outs.
“It’s the same old story,” Central coach Chad Parkerson said. “We’ve got runners on all day. It’s time to get them around. We’ve got to string together some hits. ... We’ve got to do it when it counts – that’s the bottom line.”
Central dropped another pair of region tilts to Northside-Columbus on Friday, losing 7-1 in Game 1 and 4-2 in the finale.
The Jackets remained competitive throughout the first tilt despite falling in a 3-0 hole through the fifth inning.
Northside’s Victor Ballesteros notched the game’s first RBI with a two-out single in the fourth inning. Then in the fifth, the Patriots padded a pair on a one-out squeeze and an ensuing RBI single to left field.
Northside retired the next five Central batters, thus leaving the Jackets no room to recover.
The Patriots all but shut the door in the seventh by adding four runs. Central was able to load the bases in the final inning, but could only muster a lone run.
“You’ve got to execute with runners on base,” said Jonathan Robinson, the Central pitcher who threw all seven innings in Game 1.
Game 2 was much tighter, as both teams remained tied through three innings.
Then Northside added a run in each of the fourth and fifth innings while holding Central scoreless the rest of the game.
Central (4-9, 0-7) is now riding an eight game losing streak that dates back the Feb. 28 region opener defeat to Northside.
“We’ve just got to find a way to break through the wall,” Robinson said. “Somebody is going to have to step up and do it.”