BENTON — Though the championship game was rained out before the first inning was over, the Bryant Blue League team[more] earned the championship of a 13-year-old team tournament on Saturday.
Bryant won all three games that were completed, starting with a 13-0 win over a Benton team. Bryant edged the Hot Springs Nationals, 7-6, and, in a rematch, 14-1, to set up the title game against the Hot Springs Outlaws. The final was in the bottom of the first with two out and Bryant’s Jake East on first.
Bryant was awarded the title as the top seed in the tournament.
The Bryant team includes Logan Allen, Beaux Bonvillain, Drew Brown, East, Jeffery Hastings, Dylan Hurt, Austin Kelly, Hayden Knowles, Garrett Misenheimer, Aaron Orender, Jake Roedel, and Alex Shurtleff.
Bryant 14, Hot Springs Nationals 1
This was a 2-1 game until Bryant scored 12 times in the bottom of the third.
Misenheimer had shut out the Hot Springs team on one hit through two innings. Bryant had taken a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first on doubles by East, Shurtleff and Misenheimer.
The Nationals scratched out a run in the third then Bryant unloaded. Hurt opened the home third with a single to center. Shurtleff followed with a base hit and the hit parade was on. Knowles and Kelly singled to center then Hastings beat out an infield hit as did Orender and Allen. East’s hit to center and Hurt’s knock to right came before Hot Springs was able to record the first out of the inning. Misenheimer got it going again with a base hit to right then Knowles plugged the gap in right-center. Base hits by Kelly and Hastings kept made it 14-1.
Bonvillain relieved and struck out the first batter in the fourth then gave up a single. But, after a pop to third, he picked off the runner to end the game.
Bryant 7, Hot Springs Nationals 6
Both teams scored four times in the first inning then Kelly, the Bryant starter, settled in and worked through the second only giving up a walk. Hurt relieved and shut the Nationals out on three hits over the next three innings as Bryant built a 7-4 lead with two runs in the third and another in the fourth. Shurtleff worked the sixth and surrendered a pair of runs but, with the tying run on base, he got the final out to seal the victory.
Hot Springs took advantage of three walks with a pair of hits to produce its four-run first.
Bryant’s first-inning uprising began with a single and a stolen base by East. Hurt beat out an infield hit and, after he swiped second, Shurtleff singled in the first run. With Hurt at third, Shurtleff stole second then both scored on a hit by Misenheimer.
Bryant took the lead in the third when East doubled and stole third, Hurt walked and Shurtleff cracked an RBI single to center. With one out, a base hit by Knowles and a walk to Kelly made it 6-4.
Orender opened the fourth with a walk. He stole second, took third on a passed ball and sprinted home on Allen’s single to deep short. Bonvillain singled with two out in the inning but Bryant was unable to extend the margin further.
Neither team scored in the fifth setting up Hot Springs’ last-ditch effort in the sixth that came up short.
Bryant 13, Benton 0
Over four innings, East allowed just two hits, at one stretch retiring 10 in a row as Bryant blew open a 1-0 game with five runs in the second and seven in the third.
East allowed a lead-off single but Bryant turned a 6-4-3 doubleplay to start the stretch that East eased through striking out eight before a double with two out in the top of the fourth ended the run. The game ended when the Bryant pitcher picked the runner off second.
Bryant took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. East walked and stole second. With one out, Shurtleff doubled him home. Misenheimer singled and stole second but runners were stranded at second and third as Benton escaped with no further damage.
But, in the second, Bryant revved up the offense again. Hastings drew a lead-off walk and stole second. With one out, Allen singled and swiped a base. A base hit by East plated a run and, after he stole second, Hurt found the gap in left-center for a two-run double. Shurtleff doubled as well then Misenheimer drilled a triple to left-center to make it 6-0.
Walks to Knowles and Hastings loaded the bags but all three were stranded.
The big seventh-inning eruption started with a walk to Allen. He coasted home on East’s triple. Hurt singled in a run then sprinted home on a three-bagger by Shurtleff. Misenheimer’s RBI single made it 10-0.
After Brown reached on a fielder’s choice that retired Misenheimer, consecutive two-out walks were issued to Hastings, Orender, Allen and East. Hurt was hit by a pitch forcing in the final run.