Friday, June 06, 2014

SPORTS STORY >> Beebe earns its first win

Leader sports editor

The Beebe junior American Legion team got its first win of the season in the first round of the Jacksonville Junior Invitational on Thursday at Dupree Park. Beebe beat the Searcy Silverbacks 10-8 after falling behind 8-0 in the first two innings.

Searcy scored five runs in the opening inning and added three more in the second while Beebe was held to a solitary infield single through that period, but that all changed in the third when the Badgers scored all 10 runs.

Beebe coach Michael Lawrence was proud of his team’s perseverance in getting that first win.

“We’re a very young team,” said Lawrence. “We’ve only had two practices. We played in that North Little Rock tournament over the holiday weekend and didn’t have much success, although I think we did improve. For them to hang in there and get this win after that bad start, it really shows some character.”

The bottom of the third inning started with Blaine Burge drawing a walk and Dawson Burge singling to left field to put runners on the corners. During Jake Majors’ at bat, Searcy pitcher Josh Allender balked when Dawson Burge took off to steal second, scoring Blaine Burge from third.

That prompted a pitching change by Searcy and it all fell apart for the Silverbacks from there.

The new pitcher walked the next three batters in a row on just 14 pitches, with Chase Underwood’s walk driving in Dawson Burge for Beebe’s second run.

After a strikeout, Quint Roberson walked to score Majors. Ty Searcy then laid down a perfect bunt along the first baseline that scored Alec Matlock and left everyone safe.

Leadoff hitter Tyler Woodall then walked to score Underwood and prompt another pitching change. Blaine Burge singled to left field in his second at-bat of the inning to score Roberson. Dawson Burge was hit by a pitch to score Searcy. Jake Majors hit a routine grounder to second base that went through the fielder’s legs, allowing Woodall to score. Matlock walked to score Blaine Burge and Dawson Burge scored from third on a wild pitch to finish the wild-scoring inning. Underwood popped up to first base and Ethan Hicks struck out to end the frame.

Hicks, who took the mound with one out in the first inning, inheriting a 5-0 deficit and two base runners, got back-to-back outs to end the third, but struggled with control in the second. He walked two, hit one and gave up a single in the second inning as Searcy built its 8-0 lead.

But Hicks regained his control and held Searcy scoreless over the next three innings to get the win.

Beebe, 1-4, is scheduled to play Conway at 6:30 p.m. today at Dupree Park in the tournament’s third round.