Wednesday, July 03, 2013

SPORTS STORY >> Cabot Red knocks off Benton’s Jr. Sport Shop

Leader sportswriter

The Cabot Red Centennial Bank junior American Legion team took advantage of Benton Sport Shop’s mistakes in the field en route to a 5-3 win Monday at the Cabot Sports Complex.

Cabot took a 1-0 lead after the first inning thanks to two of Benton’s five errors in the game. Two-hole hitter Josh Kelpine reached base on an E6 after the Benton shortstop dropped Kelpine’s high fly ball. A sacrifice bunt by Kayde Ridgeway moved Kelpine to second base for the second out of the inning.

The inning appeared to be over as cleanup hitter Jarrett Pitchford hit a routine grounder to shortstop. However, the throw to first base off the mark and Kelpine scored to give the Red team a 1-0 lead.

Benton responded in the top of the second inning with all three of its runs scored. It was the only inning that the Sport Shop team could find any offensive rhythm against winning pitcher Seth Cummings, who pitched all seven innings and gave up four hits, three walks, and recorded three strikeouts.

“Well, it’s been two weeks since I’ve seen them due to the dead period,” said Cabot Red coach David Smith of his team. “This is the first time I’ve gotten to do anything with them since that time frame, but the strong point that I’ve seen was Seth Cummings on the mound – hitting his spots, locating his pitches and things of that nature.

“He got a lot of ground balls, a lot of bloop pop flys. That second inning they got a couple of hits off of him and scored three runs, of course, we helped them out a little bit there.”

Cabot answered its next at bat in the bottom of the second with three runs of its own to take a lead it wouldn’t relinquish. Tyler Fowler walked to start the inning. Wesley Brown singled to right-centerfield the next at bat and leadoff hitter Braden Jarnagin reached on another Benton E6 with two outs that allowed Fowler to score Cabot’s second run of the game.

Kelpine followed with an infield single to shortstop to drive in Brown, which tied the game at 3-3. With runners at the corners, Kelpine stole second base and on the Benton catcher’s throw to second, Jarnagin stole home to give Cabot the lead.

The score remained 4-3 until the fifth inning when the Centennial Bank team set the final score. Kelpine singled to the gap in left field to lead off the inning and scored two batters later on a right-field single by Pitchford that put Cabot up 5-3.

Cabot narrowly outhit Benton 5-4. The Red Centennial Bank team finished with three errors in the field, but Benton’s five errors were the more costly.

“Throughout the game there were quite a few mistakes,” Smith said. “They made some errors and we capitalized on them. In the past when a team would make mistakes we didn’t capitalize on them and we took advantage of them today, which helped us out.”

Kelpine was the only player for either team with multiple hits. He went 2 for 2 at the plate, while Pitchford, Brown and catcher Lino Garcia had one hit apiece.

The Red Centennial Bank team (5-9) will play another home game today against Sheridan at 6 p.m.