CHARLESON, Mo. — The Columbus Senior Babe Ruth team, which won the Kansas state championship for the first time ever, finished fourth at the regional tournament in Charleston, Mo., and ends their fairy-tale season 42-3.
Head Coach Jason Boyes said he was proud of his team’s performance and while he would have liked to go further was happy with the way they played.
“We were right there with everybody,” he said.
Columbus lost to the Minnesota team which eventually placed second overall in the first round, forcing them to try to come back through the loser’s bracket.
“We were close on that one up until the fifth inning,” Boyes said.
Boyes said they were 4-2 going into the fifth and then “had one of those innings where nothing goes right and gave up eight runs.” The final score was 11-3.
In the second round, Columbus faced Coffeyville which was representing Nebraska in the tournament, because Nebraska was unable to field a team.
Boyes said Columbus had faced Coffeyville several times during the season and had their closest game so far with them, wining 6-4.
The wheels nearly came off against Missouri, Boyes said, after his team jumped out to a 12-0 lead in the first three innings — and then let their opponents back in the game.
They were able to hold off the attack, however, despite the Columbus bats suddenly going silent, and won the game 12-8.
“I don’t know if our guys just relaxed, or what,” Boyes said.
That brought Columbus back to face the Minnesota team again.
“We led 2-0 into the top fifth and then they tied it up in the bottom,” he said.
The score was tied up 3-3 in the sixth, and a scoreless seventh sent the game into extra innings.
“In the top of the eighth with two outs we had a guy hit a triple, but we couldn’t get him in,” Boyes said. “They scored in the bottom of the eighth (for the win.)”
Iowa was the overall winner after taking down the Minnesota team.
Boyes said he wanted to “just thank the parents and the players, I had a blast.”