Tuesday, July 12, 2016

SPORTS STORY >> Centennial explodes for 19 runs at Morrilton

Leader sports editor

A pretty good weekend and a nightmarish Monday sums up the Cabot AA American Legion team’s recent outings. The Centennial Bank squad scored 13 runs in three innings en route to a 19-12 victory at Morrilton on Friday. On Monday, Cabot held a 1-0 lead after four innings before losing 17-1 to Russellville in six.

In Friday’s 22-base hit game, Cabot got five-straight base hits with one out in the top of the first inning. Caleb Harpole and Easton Seidl got the first two base hits.

Gavin Tillery, Koleton Eastham and Geno Germer then drove in runs. Michael Shepherd later got a two-out hit that scored the final run of the frame.

Morrilton scored two in the bottom of the first and outscored Cabot 3-1 in the second to tie the game at five runs apiece. Cabot then exploded for eight runs in the top of the third inning.

Eastham drew a one-out walk and Germer singled to start the rally. Brandon Jones reached on an error in right field before Shepherd, Jacob Conklin, Brian Tillery and Harpole hit four-consecutive RBI singles for a 9-5 Cabot lead.

Seidl picked up his second, third and fourth RBIs of the game with a bases-clearing double, and then scored on a hit by Gavin Tillery to make it a 13-5 advantage for the Centennial Bank squad.

Cabot struck out in order in the fourth, and hit three-straight groundball outs in the fifth. Meanwhile, Morrilton also went scoreless in the fourth, but added two runs in the fifth to pull within 13-7.

Cabot added five runs in the sixth but also allowed four, and was unable to put an early end to the game.

In Cabot’s half of the sixth, Gavin Tillery drew a leadoff walk before Eastham hit an RBI double. Germer reached on an E3, but was thrown out on a fielder’s choice by Jones that also scored Eastham. Shepherd reached on a bunt single before Jack Broyles made the second out with a pop-up to third base.

Brian Tillery and Harpole then got RBI base hits that gave Cabot an 18-7 lead.

Morrilton made it 18-11 in the bottom of the sixth on a double, two singles, a walk and a Cabot error.

Centennial Bank loaded the bases with one out in the seventh, but only got one run. Jones’ RBI single was followed by a 1-2-3 double play.

Morrilton scored a run without a hit in the bottom of the seventh to set the final margin.

Eastham started on the mound and took the no decision since Morrilton tied the game after he left. Germer threw three innings for the win, and Gavin Tillery closed out the last two innings.

Seidl went 4 for 5 with two doubles, three runs scored and four RBIs to lead Cabot offensively. Harpole also went 4 for 5 with a double, an RBI and three runs scored.

Gavin Tillery went 3 for 4 with a double, three runs scored and an RBI. Shepherd went 3 for 5 and scored three runs while Brian Tillery, Eastham and Germer added two base hits apiece.

In Monday’s loss to Russellville, Germer started on the mound and pitched well for four innings. He ran into some trouble in the fifth, and there were few available arms to take his place.

Four other players took the mound for Cabot, but none were regular pitchers and all struggled. Five players were no shows for Cabot and only one notified coaches that he would be absent.

“We just ran out of pitching,” said Cabot coach Chris Gross. “We’ve played a lot of baseball the last few days and we had some guys not show up. So it turned bad pretty quick. Germer threw pretty well, though. We’re hitting pretty good, too. We didn’t get them at the right time, tonight. But I think we’re where we need to be, or pretty close.”

Seidl also had two doubles and scored the only run on Monday.