Boys Varsity Baseball
May 31, 2021 - WIth a 10-6 victory over the Panthers of Bloomington South, the second-ranked Columbus North Bull Dogs claimed the Bloomington North Sectional title, improving to 27-4-1, and advancing to face Center Grove in the Jasper Regional Semi-finals.
The Bull Dogs got off to a fast start against the Panthers with senior Kyler McIntosh on the mound. They scored three in the bottom of the first inning, and then two more in the bottom of the second, thanks to a two-run home run by McIntosh to center field. South then scored a run in the top of the fourth inning to cut the Bull Dog lead to 5-1. The Dogs then increased their lead to 10-1 with a five-run fifth inning that included a grand slam by Dyllan Redmon and a sacrifice RBI grounder by Austin Bode.
The nine-run lead had Bull Dog fans thinking about a run-rule early ending to the game, but Bloomington South had other plans. Two walks and two singles allowed the Panthers to get two runs on the board in the top of the sixth inning, cutting the Bull Dog lead to 10-3. The Dogs threatened again in the bottom half of the sixth, but came away with no runs.
Jacob Bailey came in to pitch in the top of the seventh inning and had a rough outing. The leadoff hitter reached on a throwing error, Bailey walked the next batter, and the third hitter pounded a three-run homerun to right field, cutting the Bull Dog lead to 10-6. After a ground out, the Panthers loaded the bases with three consecutive singles, and Bailey’s outing was over. Head Coach Ben McDaniel decided to give the ball back to McIntosh to try to pitch his way out of a jam, and he answered the call, forcing the next two Panthers to pop out, securing the victory and Sectional championship for the Dogs.
McIntosh pitched 6-⅔ innings, giving up three runs on nine hits while striking out four. Bailey recorded one-third of an inning, giving up three runs on four hits.
McIntosh (double and homerun) and Redmon (single and home run) each had two hits for the Dogs, and between them accounted for eight RBI. Bailey added a double and Bull Dog hitters were hit by pitch six times, including twice by Bode.
The Bull Dogs’ Sectional title adds a third to Coach McDaniel’s stint as head coach, following Sectional championships in 2014 and 2017. The Jasper Regional will showcase four of the top 15 teams in Class 4A, with North’s 11:00 am, June 5 meeting with third-ranked Center Grove being the marquee matchup. The two teams met twice during the regular season, with Columbus North winning both matchups. The Dogs won 10-0 on April 3 and 3-2 on May 20. The winner will meet the winner of Jasper and Floyd Central, who play immediately following the Dogs and Trojans.