By Rob Patrick
TEXARKANA — Lefty Jason Hastings allowed an unearned run on four hits over six innings and the[more] Bryant Hornets used 11 hits to take advantage of 13 walks and five errors to start head coach Kirk Bock on his second 500 wins Tuesday night.
Bryant’s 11-1 victory over the struggling Texarkana Razorbacks came after Bock reached 500 victories in his coaching career in a 7-2 in over Sheridan last Friday. He entered the season needing 15 wins. His team now has 16.
The Hornets improved to 4-1 in the South Conference going into a league contest at home against Lake Hamilton on Friday.
Hastings fanned eight and walked three. Devin Dupree worked around a one-out walk in the seventh to nail finish out the win, adding another strikeout. Hastings retired the first six batters he faced as his teammates grabbed a 3-0 lead.
“He certainly had them off-balance and did a good job,” Bock stated.
At the plate, Marcus Wilson had two hits and drove in four runs. Hayden Daniel added two hits as did Trevor Ezell. As the stats might indicate, the Hornets had runners all over the bases against Texarkana lefty starter Brady Chattaway and reliever Steven Boyce. They scored 11 runs and still stranded 17.
“I’m a little discouraged about that,” Bock mentioned. “The last three innings, we left the bases loaded. That’s where we’ve got to come up with a big hit right there — a big two-out hit — but we didn’t get it done.
“Other than that, we picked up 11 hits — and those soft (throwing) lefties are hard to hit,” he added. “I thought we did a good job of getting in rhythm with him and we hit the ball hard at times.”
Bryant broke the ice in the second inning. Ty Harris led off with a single and raced to third on a base hit to left-center by Daniel. After Daniel swiped second, Brandan Warner came through with a sacrifice fly.
With two out, Korey Thompson kept the inning going with the first of his three walks. He stole second then Daniel scored on a wild pitch.
Chattaway lost sight of the strike zone at that point. He issued consecutive walks to Tyler Green, Ezell and Wilson to force in the third run.
As he had in the second, Harris led off the third. He walked this time and swiped second, taking third on Daniel’s long fly to right. Hayden Lessenberry then executed the safety squeeze to perfection to get Harris home, making it 4-0.
Texarkana got its run in the bottom of the third and threatened to get more. The inning started with a single by Blake Sanders. An out later, Jackson Murphy stroked a single to right. With Sanders making the turn and heading toward third, Daniel hit the cut-off man, Ezell, perfectly and the Bryant shortstop whirled and fired a strike to Warner to nail the runner.
Hastings would’ve been out of the inning but Bryant’s lone error occurred, allowing Murphy to score. Boyce followed with a single and, after a double steal, the Razorbacks had two more in position to score with their three-hole hitter up, Cole Harris. He and Hastings battled to a 3-2 count and, after Harris fouled off a pair of pitches, Hastings got him on a perfectly-placed breaking ball.
“You’ve got to be able to throw that pitch in that situation and throw it for a strike and he did,” noted Bock.
It was still 4-1 going into the bottom of the fifth when Braydon Ward drew a walk. With Chattaway at the plate, Bryant catcher Trey Breeding smothered a ball in the dirt, pounced on it as it rolled a few feet away and fired to second to get Ward.
Chattaway went on to walk as well but Hastings fanned Lavert Paxton and got Sanders to line to Ezell at short to keep it a three-run game.
The Bryant lefty would finish up by working around a one-out walk to Murphy in the fifth and, after Harris singled to start the sixth, picking him off. Finishing with a flurry, Hastings struck out the last two he faced.
By then, the Hornets had bumped the lead to 9-1, scoring three in the fifth to chase Chattaway before adding two in Boyce’s first full inning of work.
The fifth was fueled by three of Texarkana’s errors. Lessenberry reached on the first one. Pinch-runner Connor Tatum advanced to third on a balk then scored when Warner’s grounder to short was botched. Thompson sacrificed then Green’s grounder to third drew a wild throw to first to put runners at second and third. Ezell’s sacrifice fly made it 8-1 before Wilson shot a single to center to bring Green in.
With Hastings at the plate, the count went to 3-1. Wilson stole second, so they gave Hastings first on an intentional walk. Boyce came on and walked Ty Harris to load the bases but induced a grounder to third for a force to end the frame.
In the sixth, however, Warner singled with one out, took second on a passed ball and third on a wild pitch. Thompson walked then Green reached on another error as Warner scored. Ezell’s bloop single sent Thompson to third for Wilson who came through with the Hornets’ third sacrifice fly of the game.
Daniel stroked a double into the left-field corner to start the top of the seventh. As Lessenberry walked, a pair of wild pitches allowed Daniel to come around.
Warner rolled one to the left of the third baseman Paxton who roamed wide to make the play and throw him out. But the Razorbacks left third base open and Lessenberry headed that way. With Boyce trying to get there, the return throw from first was caught and though it looked like Boyce couldn’t get the tag on Lessenberry, who was sliding to the outfield side of third, he was called out.
Nonetheless, Thompson walked and Green hit a screamer into left off the Paxton’s glove for a single. Walks to Ezell and Wilson forced in the final run.
BRYANT 11, TEXARKANA 1
Hornets ab r h bi Razorbacks ab r h bi
Green, cf 5 1 1 1 Phillips, lf-c 3 0 0 0
Ezell, ss 3 0 2 1 Boyce, ss-p 3 0 1 0
Wilson, lf 3 0 2 4 C.Harris, c-ss 3 0 1 0
Hastings, p 4 0 1 0 Ward, 3b 1 0 0 0
Caldwell, cr 0 0 0 0 Jones, lf 1 0 0 0
T.Harris, 1b 2 2 1 0 Chattaway, p-rf 2 0 0 0
Daniel, rf 5 2 2 0 Paxton, rf-3b 3 0 0 0
Lessenberry, dh 3 0 0 2 Sanders, 2b 2 0 1 0
Tatum, pr 0 1 0 0 Collins, cf 3 0 0 0
Warner, 3b 4 2 1 2 Fanagan, 1b 0 0 0 0
Thompson, 2b 1 3 1 0 Murphy, 1b 2 1 1 0
Breeding, c 0 0 0 0
Totals 30 11 11 10 Totals 23 1 4 0
BRYANT 031 032 2 — 11
Texarkana 001 000 0 — 1
E—Ward 2, Fanagan, Wilson, Boyce 2, Paxton. DP—Texarkana 1. LOB—Bryant 17, Texarkana 5. 2B—Ezell, Daniel. 3B—Wilson. SB—Thompson, Harris, Phillips, Boyce, Daniel. S—Lessenberry, Thompson. SF—Warner, Ezell, Wilson.
Pitching ip r er h bb so
Hastings (W) 6 1 0 4 3 8
Dupree 1 0 0 0 1 1
Chattaway (L) 4.2 7 4 7 6 3
Boyce 1.1 4 2 4 7 0
Balk—Chattaway. HBP—T.Harris (by Chattaway). WP—Chattaway 1, Boyce 3. PB—C.Harris, Phillips.