Friday, June 05, 2015

SPORTS STORY >> Sox spoil Centennial Senior opener

Leader sportswriter

Tuesday’s senior American Legion season opener was rough for the Cabot Centennial Bank team, as it fell 15-1 in six innings to Bryant at Brian Wade Conrade Memorial Field in Cabot.

Bryant (1-0) was the better team in every aspect Tuesday, outhitting Cabot 14-2. Centennial Bank (0-1) committed five errors in the field, while Bryant had zero errors, and the Black Sox used five different pitchers in the six innings played.

Those five Bryant pitchers combined for 11 strikeouts, and gave up just one walk while allowing just the two hits. The Black Sox wasted no time scoring runs, putting up three in the top of the first inning.

Brandon Warner hit an infield single to third base to start things off for Bryant, and three-hole hitter Blake Patterson followed with a single up the middle. Cleanup hitter Jason Hastings then walked, and Evan Lee drove in the Black Sox’s first run with a one-out single to left field, scoring Warner.

Garrett Misenheimer then hit a two-RBI double to deep centerfield for the final two runs of the inning. Bryant scored two more runs in the top of the second before Cabot added its lone run of the game in the bottom half of the inning.

Centennial Bank cleanup hitter Logan Kirkendoll led off the bottom of the second with a stand-up double to left field. He advanced to third base two batters later on a 4-3 sacrifice by starting pitcher Gavin Tillery, and scored the next at-bat on a two-out infield single up the middle by Logan Gilbertson, which made it a 5-1 game.

Bryant, though, came back with two more runs in the third, and the Black Sox dominated the rest of the game. Bryant scored its two runs in the third with two outs.

Nine-hole hitter Conner Tatum walked to start the two-out rally, and leadoff hitter Drew Tipton followed with a single to the right-field gap. A single by Warner the next at-bat scored Tatum and put Tipton at third. With Patterson at the plate, Tipton scored the Black Sox’s seventh run on a passed ball at home plate.

Bryant put two more runs on its side of the board in the top of the fifth, and both were unearned. Tatum and Tipton both reached on back-to-back Cabot errors in the infield. Tatum later scored on a passed ball and Tipton on a wild pitch. Tipton’s run gave the Black Sox a 9-1 advantage.

The Black Sox scored their final six runs with two outs in the top of the sixth – the highlight of which was a bases-clearing single by Warner. Warner drove in three runs on the play, but only because the ball got past Cabot’s right fielder.

As a result, Warner went all the way to third base on the error, and later scored on a passed ball, which made it a 14-1 game.

Bryant’s final run came on an E5, which was a low throw to first. That ground ball was off the bat of Lee, and Patterson scored on the play.

Dylan Hurt, Hastings, Patterson, Lee and Warner were the five Bryant pitchers Tuesday. Hurt got the start and technically the win. He threw the first two innings and gave up Cabot’s lone run and two hits.

The last four pitchers for the Black Sox threw one inning each and combined for a no-hitter, recording 10 strikeouts while giving up no walks.

At the plate, Warner and Patterson led Bryant as each went 3 for 4. Hastings and Tipton also had multiple hits with two apiece.

Gilbertson and Kirkendoll combined for Cabot’s two hits.