It was never any secret Dickson County Baseball would go to the region tournament this season.
Barring a monumental collapse against inferior opponents they were predetermined in a four-team district where the top two advance.
Kenwood and Northwest were simply outmatched.
The Cougars run-ruled them each time they played.
The issue was Henry County.
A team that while they were not the most fundamentally sound, could crush the baseball.
The Patriots are a team you must outscore.
They do not lose or win games low scoring.
Dickson County had failed three times leading up to Tuesday night to outscore them.
While Tuesday was another loss, 7-6, the story was not about the Patriots this time around.
The Cougars held a 6-4 lead in the fifth inning when the Patriots infielder went yard.
That made it 6-5, cougars leading, but with no room for error against a hard-hitting team.
An inning later, Eli Potter would give up a two-run homer that handed Henry County a one-run lead.
Credit to Ben Fisher for relieving him and keeping the inning to just those two runs.
Then came the top of the seventh.
Dickson County needed one run to tie and two to win.
Clinton Shrader drew a lead-off walk and then on a ground ball advanced to second but was thrown out going to third on an overthrow to first.
After another walk and a fielders choice that advanced runners, the Cougars had two outs and runners at second and third.
Logan Myatt did all he could hammering a ball into the deepest part of the park.
It was warning track power, caught, and the game ended.
It was an unfortunate way to lose in a great game.
What might be more unfortunate though is that due to the loss, now the Cougars must travel.
That means Dickson County, Monday night, has to go to one of the toughest places in Middle TN, Rossview.
A program who has won a state title as recently as 2018 and consistently competes to go to Murfreesboro.
Earlier this year, for reference, the Hawks defeated the Cougars 12-7.
Dickson County gave up two bombs in that game as well.
This is Rodney O Parker’s first regional tournament appearance as a head coach and I know he would love for it to continue past Monday evening.
However, for that to happen, the Cougars will have to limit the long ball, play stellar defense, and score some runs.
All three things they have struggled with at times this year.
They will also need their six all-district players to step up.
Logan Myatt, Cade Pilkington, Adam Roth, Ben Fisher, Owen Hutcheson, and Eli Potter were all honored for their regular season feats.
Pilkington, alongside Nick Sullivan and Clinton Shrader, picked up all-tournament honors.
That is eight guys, you only field nine.
The Cougars cannot, with that many “dudes” fail to win a district game and come up short in a region semifinal.
A seven pm first pitch, we will have the call Monday night on the RFC Sports Network.