published Monday, August 27th, 2012

Jackson Generals tops the Chattanooga Lookouts in the battle for a Southern League playoff spot

PLAYOFF TICKETS

Tickets for Chattanooga's potential Sept. 8 playoff game against the Jackson Generals will go on sale today at 9 a.m. To purchase the tickets, call 423-267-4849 or go to lookouts.com.

The Chattanooga Lookouts will put Southern League divisional playoff tickets on sale this morning, though previews are still showing at AT&T Field.

North Division first-half champion Jackson stayed within striking distance in the second-half race Sunday afternoon by topping the Lookouts 5-4. Chattanooga leads the division by two games over the Generals with seven games remaining, and they are scheduled to meet again at AT&T tonight and Tuesday afternoon.

"This was only our 13th game against them, and that's rare for two teams within the same division," Lookouts manager Carlos Subero said. "This is the first time we've seen them since June, and they've got a little different club, so you definitely try and get a read for what could happen, but you've got to go step-by-step. Our biggest thing is getting into the playoffs."

Chattanooga is just 4-9 this season against the Generals, who prevailed Sunday on Nate Tenbrink's bloop single to left in the top of the ninth inning that scored Francisco Martinez.

Should the Lookouts win the second half, they would open the divisional series with two games in Jackson before hosting the Generals on Saturday, Sept. 8, and again Sept. 9-10, if necessary. Should Jackson rally and claim both halves and the Lookouts win the wild-card race they currently lead over Tennessee by three games, Chattanooga would host the Sept. 8 contest, with Jackson hosting the first two and, if necessary, the last two.

Sept. 8 is the second Saturday of the college football season, and Sept. 9 is the first Sunday of the NFL season.

"It would be unbelievably challenging, but the fact is not everybody out there is a football fan," Lookouts general manager Rich Mozingo said. "There are a lot of Lookouts fans out there, and we have a team that has a chance to win a Southern League championship."

Chattanooga, which was swept in the divisional series a year ago by Tennessee, has not made consecutive playoff appearances since 1995-96. The Lookouts have not won the league title since 1988.

The Lookouts took a 4-1 lead Sunday on Bobby Coyle's bases-clearing triple into the left-field corner in the fifth inning. Jackson roared back with three in the sixth, highlighted by Stefen Romero's two-run home run to left.

Jackson's win Sunday will prevent the Lookouts from being able to clinch a postseason berth during this homestand.

"Our focus is all about nailing down a playoff spot," Lookouts pitching coach Chuck Crim said. "This thing is not over yet."

Sunday's crowd of 1,902 brought AT&T Field's total attendance this season to 238,897. The Lookouts are assured of going over 240,000 tonight, which would be a first since 2007.

Zach Lee (2-3, 5.03) is scheduled to start tonight's 7:15 game for the Lookouts, with Anthony Fernandez (4-2, 2.91) scheduled for the Generals.

about David Paschall...

David Paschall is a sports writer for the Times Free Press. He started at the Chattanooga Free Press in 1990 and was part of the Times Free Press when the paper started in 1999. David covers University of Georgia football, as well as SEC football recruiting, SEC basketball, Chattanooga Lookouts baseball and other sports stories. He is a Chattanooga native and graduate of the Baylor School and Auburn University. David has received numerous honors for ...

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