July 24 in Bryant athletic history: 2015

Cates, Coleman lead Sport Shop Sox to win in AA State opener

EDITOR’S NOTE: Because the look back at each day in Bryant athletic history has been so favorably received during the time when there was no sports during the COVID-19 shutdown, BryantDaily.com will continueposting past stories of Bryant athletics either posted on BryantDaily.com (from 2009 to the present) or published in the Bryant Times (from 1998 to 2008).

SHERIDAN — Cameron Coleman drilled a bases-loaded triple in the bottom of the second as the Bryant Sport Shop Black Sox overcame a 1-0 deficit and, behind the pitching of Joey Cates, went on to a 6-3 win over Morrilton in the opening round of the AA American Legion State Tournament on Friday.

The Sox, now 16-10, are set to play again on Saturday at noon against either North Little Rock or Hot Springs Village.

Cates scattered seven hits, walked two, hit a batter and struck out seven. Morrilton rallied to within 4-3 going into the bottom of the fifth but the Sox scored two in the bottom of the inning to regain the upper hand.

Coleman and Cates each had two hits for the Sox.

Morrilton took the lead on a first-inning double by John Beck and an errant throw on a steal of third. In the second, Cates struck out the side around a walk and a hit batsman.

Bryant’s second began with a walk to Caleb Chaffin. Jordan Gentry singled and, after Christian Harp got a sacrifice bunt down, Daniel Darbonne came through with an RBI single to tie the game. With two down, Jeffrey Hastings was hit by a pitch to load the bases for Coleman, who drilled an 0-1 pitch for the three-run triple.

Morrilton managed a run in the top of the third. Beck singled and scored on a double by Jace Hill but Cates struck out Reggie Toney to end the inning.

It stayed 4-2 as both teams failed to score in the fourth. Cates surrendered a lead-off single to Caleb Canady but then picked him off. He struck out Austin Bell and got Hunter Andrews to ground out to short.

In the bottom of the inning, Cates singled but was forced on a grounder to second by Chaffin. Gentry’s grounder to short forced Chaffin but he then stole second only to be stranded as Joe Beck, the Morrilton starter, got out of the inning.

Will Stewart singled to lead off the fifth for Morrilton. With one out, John Beck singled and, with two down, Hill singled in a run to make it 4-3.

In the home fifth, Coleman sparked the Bryant answer with a double. With one out, Cates singled him home. He then stole his way to third and, after Chaffin walked, Gentry made it 6-3 with a sacrifice fly.

Harp singled before Beck got out of the inning but the damage had been done.

Cates pitched around an error and a walk in the top of the sixth, starting a doubleplay on a comebacker and firing to shortstop Myers Buck who made the turn.

In the seventh, Tanner Albilar reached on an error and wound up at third but Cates and the Bryant defense retired the next three batters. Coleman caught a fly in left, Cates fanned Joe Beck then Hill bounced out to Buck at short to close it out.

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