NORTH LITTLE ROCK — The Bryant Black Sox AA American Legion team waited out seven walks but couldn’t take full advantage as they were held to two hits on Wednesday as the North Central AA team of Salem pinned an 11-2 loss on them in the winners’ bracket of the AA State Tournament at DeJanis Field.
Not only did North Central hammer out 13 hits but the Sox committed eight errors in the loss.
They’ll play again in an elimination game on Thursday. North Central advances to play in the winners’ bracket finals.
Gage Horn had a double and Grant Dunbar hit a single to account for the Sox’ lone hits.
The Salem team gradually pulled away, scoring two in the first, one in the second, two more in the third and one in the top of the fourth before the Sox were able to get on the board.
Horn’s double came with one out in the bottom of the fourth. When the ball was misplayed in the outfield, he took third. Luke Bickerstaff grounded to first to pick up the RBI.
Starter Clay Crawford worked around a one-out double in the top of the fifth before Bryant whittled another run off the margin. Dunbar’s single came with one out in the bottom of the fifth. An errant pickoff throw allowed him to take second. Brady Brower’s grounder to short, allowed Dunbar to advance to third. He scored when Carson Kemp grounder to first was booted.
Hunter Holt followed with a walk, but a strikeout ended the rally.
A three-run sixth turned the 6-2 lead into a 9-2 advantage. And, after the Sox were retired in order in the bottom of the inning, North Central added two more to set the final score.
Brower managed a two-out walk in the bottom of the seventh but that’s all the Sox could muster.