SHERIDAN — More than once the Bryant Black Sox Junior American Legion baseball team was scheduled to play the new Magnet Cove Acme Brick Black Cats during the regular season but something always prevented it. The two teams finally met in the first round of the Zone 4 tournament on Friday and the Cats put together a six-run first. The Sox never quite recovered as they absorbed an 8-3 loss.
Bryant will play on Saturday at 2:30 p.m., in an elimination game.
The Sox managed just four hits in the contest, one each from Logan Chambers, Brooks Ellis, Jacob Wright and Brandon Hoover.
The opening blitz by Magnet Cove came after a one-out double by Chambers in the top of the first came to naught. The Cats used six hits and a walk to plate the six runs in the home half.
Right-hander Myers Buck relieved starter Grayson Prince in the second and the Sox turned a doubleplay to wipe out a walk on the way to a scoreless frame.
Bryant got on the board in the fourth. Wright and Hoover each walked. Prince grounded into a force at second then Konnor Clontz drew a free pass to load the bases. Ryan Lessenberry picked up an RBI on a groundout and, though Buck was hit by a pitch to load them up again, that’s all the Sox could manage.
Magnet Cove capped of its scoring in the bottom of the fourth, instigated by a two-out walk. A steal, a single and a two-base error followed.
The Sox put together their own two-out rally in the top of the fifth. Wright started it with a double to left. After a pitching change, Hoover singled. And when the ball was misplayed in right, Wright scored.
Bryant put together one more rally in the top of the seventh. Catton was struck by a pitch and, with one out, Ellis beat out an infield hit with Catton hustling to third. Wright walked then Hoover picked up the RBI with a groundout.
Though Prince was hit by a pitch to load the bases, that’s all the Sox could muster as Magnet Cove closed out the win.