March 23 in Bryant athletic history: 2004

Wells spins gem against Catholic

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, will continue posting past stories of Bryant athletics either posted on (from 2009 to the present) or published in the Bryant Times (from 1998 to 2008).



Justin Wells had one of those games a baseball player dreams about when he and the Bryant Hornets faced the Little Rock Catholic Rockets in a AAAAA-Central Conference game on Tuesday, March 23.

Wells pitched a no-hitter, striking out 10 and walking just one, blasted a solo home run and doubled in a run to lead the Hornets to a 3-0 win.

Few no-hitters are a breeze but, in this one, Wells had to protect a tenuous lead as well as work around four errors by the Bryant defense.

The win improved Wells to 4-0 on the season and lowered his earned run average to 0.55. The Hornets improved to 14-0 overall, 2-0 in conference play.

Catholic pitchers Anthony Aruffo and Andrew Emrich limited Bryant to just five hits but six walks coupled with four errors helped the Hornets push across the runs it would need for the victory.

The game was scoreless through the first two innings. Wells retired the first five batters he faced before a pair of errors allowed the Rockets to get runners to first and second. But Wells struck out Nathan Hill to leave them stranded.

That started a stretch in which the Bryant right-hander retired 11 of the next 12 he faced. The only baserunner during the stretch was Hill who reached on a third-strike wild pitch with two down in the fifth.

That streak ended when Steven Head’s grounder to third drew a wild throw to first with one out in the sixth. Head reached second on the play but advanced no further as Wells got David Hum to fly to Dustin Tinkler in deep left then struck out clean-up hitter Daniel Hennessey.

Wells finished out the game by pitching around a walk and an error in the seventh.

The Hornets broke up the scoreless game with a run in the third when Todd Bryan reached on a one-out error, swiped second and, with two down, sprinted home on Wells’ double.

Wells’ homer, the first by the Hornets this season, came with two out in the fifth.

In the sixth, Bryant added an insurance run when Travis wood walked, took second on a wild pitch and scored on cousin Richie Wood’s second hit of the game.

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