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BENTON — The Bryant 6-and-under tournament team came back from an opening loss to finish[more] second at the Benton Triple Crown Tournament held last weekend.
On Saturday, the team opened with a 24-13 loss to Sylvan Hills but came back to edge Benton 7-6 and defeat the Vipers, 12-8. On Sunday, Bryant reached the championship game by out-lasting Sylvan Hills, 16-15, but, in a rematch with the Vipers, they absorbed a 16-6 loss in the finale.
The team, coached by C.J. Brown, Brad Chism, Patrick Schroeder and Jeff Jackson, includes, J.T. Allen, Carter Brown, Cooper Chism, Cannan Davis, Brodie Fischer, Avery Heidelberg, Landan Jackson, Cole Martin, E.J. McCoy, Andrew Schroeder, Braxton Speer, Jake Taylor and Hudson Thompson.
Vipers 16, Bryant 6
The Vipers scored the maximum of six runs in the top of the first inning and Bryant whittled on the margin to get within 9-5 before another max innings in the top of the fourth gave the Vipers a lead that could not be overtaken.
After the Vipers’ opening outburst, Bryant picked up two runs in impressive fashion in the home first. Speer smacked a triple and Heidelberg followed with a home run. McCoy followed with a double but was thrown out trying to stretch it to a triple.
Davis singled but then Brown and Schroeder each bounced into forceouts to end the inning.
And when Bryant held the Vipers without a run in the top of the second, a two-run home half, trimmed the margin to 6-4. Chism started Bryant’s second with a single but was forced at second on a grounder to short by Thomason. Allen kept the inning going with a base hit and Jackson knocked in a run with a single. Allen scored when Taylor singled but that’s all Bryant could get.
The Vipers put together a three-run third to extend the margin then held Bryant to one in the bottom of the third. Singles and McCoy and Davis produced the run.
Even after the Vipers’ six-run fourth, Bryant didn’t go quietly. In the bottom of the fourth, Martin singled and Chism doubled to get things started. Thomason singled in the run and got Chism to third but he had to hold when, with one out, Jackson grounded into a force at second. A grounder by Fischer resulted in another forceout ending the game.
Bryant 16, Sylvan Hills 15
In a wild game, Sylvan Hills overcame a 14-13 deficit with two runs in the top of the fifth then Bryant rallied for two in the bottom of the fifth to win it in thrilling fashion.
Schroeder’s one-out single drove in the tying and winning runs for Bryant. It came after McCoy and Davis had opened the inning and Brown had moved them up to second and third with a tap to the pitcher.
Both teams had max innings in the first but when Sylvan Hills was held to three in the second, Bryant posted another six runs in the bottom of the inning to gain the upper hand.
And, after the Bryant team limited Sylvan Hills to just one in the third, a two-run uprising in the bottom of the inning produced a 14-10 advantage going into the fourth.
Three in the top of the fourth got Sylvan Hills within a run. And when Bryant was held scoreless in the bottom of the inning, it set up the dramatic seesaw finish.
Bryant’s first was fueled by consecutive singles from Speer, Heidelberg, McCoy, Davis, Brown and Schroeder. Martin picked up an RBI when he bounced into a force at second and when Chism and Thomason followed with hits it was 6-6.
In the second, Allen picked up where Bryant’s hitters had left off in the first, smacking a single. Jackson followed with a big bang, rapping an RBI triple. Fischer singled him in then Taylor belted a double.
With two down, Heidelberg singled and McCoy ripped a triple to make it 11-9. Davis knocked McCoy in to max out the frame.
In the two-run third, it was a double by Chism and a triple by Thomason that produced the runs after Brown had opened the inning with a base hit.
Bryant 12, Vipers 8
Bryant wrapped up play on Saturday with a win over the eventual champion, building a 6-0 lead. The Vipers pulled even in the bottom of the third but Bryant answered with five in the top of the fourth. The resulting 11-6 lead proved too much for the Vipers to overcome as Bryant added a run in the top of the fifth and held a comeback attempt to just two in the final at-bat.
Heidelberg singled with one out in the first and, though he was forced at second on a ball hit by McCoy, Davis came through with an RBI hit to make it 1-0.
Neither team scored in the second then Bryant put together a five-run third with all five runs scoring after two were out. Allen’s one-out single got things started. He was forced at second on Jackson’s grounder to short but then the hit parade began. Fischer, Taylor, Speer, Heidelberg, McCoy and Davis each cracked singles in succession.
The Vipers broke through in the bottom of the inning but Bryant had an answer in the top of the fourth when Schroeder, Chism, Thomason and Martin belted consecutive singles, With one out, Jackson capped the inning with a double.
Bryant added an insurance run in the top of the fifth when Speer doubled and scored on McCoy’s one-out single.
Bryant 7, Benton 6
In another nail-biter, McCoy drilled a two-out RBI double in the bottom of the fifth to win the game after Benton had tied it in the top of the inning. Fischer had singled to open the inning. Speer beat out a hit but was forced at second on a grounder by Heidelberg. McCoy came up with runners at the corners and delivered the game-winner.
It was a back-and-forth battle. Benton took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first but Bryant gained the upper hand in the bottom of the inning. Speer singled to open the inning. He was forced at second on Heidelberg’s grounder to short but McCoy followed with a double. Singles by Brown and Schroeder chased home the runs to make it 2-1.
Benton tied it in the top of the second and held Bryant without a run in the home half. A three-run third gave Benton the lead.
Bryant narrowed the gap to a run in the bottom of the third when Fischer singled and, with two down, Heidelberg, McCoy and Brown chased him around the bags with base hits.
And when Bryant held Benton scoreless in the top of the fourth, it produced an opportunity to regain the lead. And that’s what happened as Schroeder and Chism singled. Jackson bounced into a force at second and, with two down, Martin delivered a two-run single.
Benton tied it in the top of the fifth and had a runner forced out at third to end the inning, setting the stage for Bryant’s winning rally.
Sylvan Hills 24, Bryant 13
Bryant ran out to a 4-0 lead in the first inning when Speer opened with a double and Heidelberg, McCoy, Brown and Davis followed with consecutive singles. Chism drove in a run when he grounded into a force out.
Even though Bryant scored in every inning, it couldn't match Sylvan Hills, which produced maximum outburst in the second, third, fourth and fifth innings.
Still, Bryant regained the upper hand in the bottom of the second with a four-run outburst that produced an 8-6 edge.
Allen and Taylor had singled and, with two out, Fischer doubled to ignite the second inning offense. Speer and Heidelberg each singled and McCoy doubled to complete the uprising.
But another Sylvan Hills’ six proved too much for Bryant to fully overcome. The team trimmed two runs off the margin in the home third. Davis singled then Schroeder and Chism ripped back-to-back doubles.
In the fourth, Martin and Taylor each singled. Fischer bounced into a force at second but two-out hits by Heidelberg and McCoy produced two more runs.
In the bottom of the fifth, Davis tripled and scored on a single by Schroeder before Sylvan Hills closed out the contest.