Nothing will build a team’s confidence better than a winning streak. Conversely, nothing scuttles confidence like defeat.

 

Nothing will build a team’s confidence better than a winning streak. Conversely, nothing scuttles confidence like defeat.
Central was rolling along with a 3-1 record before traveling to Forrest City last week for a doubleheader to open 5A-East play.
The Cougars stumbled not once but twice, 12-2, and 11-9.
With an off day Monday, Coach Matt Cummings took time to assess Central’s progress and shortcomings.
Cummings said he strongly believed the Cougars could have won BOTH games against Forrest City.
“They jumped out in front and we didn’t fight back,” Cummings said of the 12-2 loss.
“Their pitcher got a lot of putouts,” Cummings said of the Forrest City starting hurler.
The Cougars definitely had the Mustangs on the run in the nightcap, jumping ahead, 4-0, in the first inning.
John Garner was pitching well in the early going of the second game. He controlled the tempo for three innings.
 It was the defense behind Garner that proved Central’s undoing in the nightcap.
Forrest City took advantage of fielding gaffs and scored six runs in the bottom of the fourth to go ahead, 6-4.
Central came back to take a 7-6 lead in the top of sixth.
That didn’t last long as the Mustangs exploded for five runs in the bottom half of the sixth to take a commanding 11-7 lead.
And yet, Central showed some poise and resilence by putting two runs on the board in the top of the seventh.
From that point on, Central cratered.
“We had the bases loaded with one out,” Cummings recalled.
As the Cougars gain experience confidence should follow, Cummings believes.
Cummings has gotten the Cougars further this season already than the past two seasons when Central slept through back-to-back winless seasons.
Cummings graduated from Delta State University at Cleveland, Miss., a college known for its sports accomplishments, especially baseball.
“Delta State has been signing players who might have played for Ole Miss or Mississippi State,” Cummings said.
Cummings saw time as a Statesman in baseball.