Bryant finishes tournament with run-rule wins over Senators, Dogs
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 continue posting 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).
By ROB PATRICK
SHERIDAN — After suffering a loss in the opening round of the Sheridan Invitational Tournament on a Saturday to forget on March 3, the Bryant Hornets baseball team bounced back with a pair of lopsided wins. On Tuesday, March 6, the Hornets eased to a 10-0 win over Pulaski Robinson then closed out the consolation bracket with a 15-5 romp over Morrilton on Thursday, March 8.
The wins improved the Hornets to 5-3 overall this season heading into their 7A-Central Conference opener against Little Rock Catholic at Lamar Porter Field on Friday, March 9.
Bryant 15, Morrilton 5
Cody Walker, Joey Winiecki and Trent Daniel each had three hits and the Hornets blew open a close game with four-run uprisings in the fifth and sixth innings to dismiss the Devil Dogs.
Tim Bearden picked up the win with relief help from Zach Cross and Drew Ransdell. Through four innings, Bearden had allowed just two hits, though he had walked five and hit a batter. He had also struck out six to hold Morrilton to just two runs.
The Hornets had taken a 3-0 lead in the first. Jake Jackson singled, stole second and, after Jordan Knight walked and Cody Walker singled to load the bases, scored on a bases-loaded walk to Alex Kehrees. Knight and Walker eventually scored on wild pitches.
Morrilton picked up an unearned run in the top of the third on a pair of walks and a two-out error but the Hornets got two in the bottom of the frame. Winiecki singled and stole second then Kerhees walked and both moved up on a wild pitch. Tyler Pickett singled in a run and so did Daniel to make it 5-1.
A walk and a pair of singles added a run for Morrilton in the top of the fourth but the Hornets trumped that again in the bottom of the inning when Walker doubled, Winiecki singled him home and eventually scored on a wild pitch.
Bearden was greeted by two singles to start the fifth and gave way to Cross who struggled with his control before getting out of the inning. But not before Morrilton scored three times to make it a 7-5 game.
But it wasn’t so close for long. In the bottom of the inning, Tyler Sawyer and Daniel drew walks. Jackson singled in a run and, after Knight sacrificed runners to second and third, Winiecki drew a two-out walk to load the bases. Kehrees cleared them with a double, making it 11-5.
Ransdell pitched a 1-2-3 sixth and the Hornets ended the game with another four-run uprising that featured hits by Daniel, Knight, Walker and the game-ender by Winiecki.
Bryant 10, Pulaski Robinson 0
After consecutive losses, head coach Terry Harper juggled his lineup and the Hornets responded with a run-rule win against an over-matched Joe T. Robinson team. Senior lefty Alex Kehrees combined with sophomore Drew Ransdell on a one-hit shutout in the five-inning contest.
The offense was led by Cody Walker and David Guarno with two hits each. Walker had an RBI double and a solo homer; Guarno singled in a run and doubled in another.
The Senators’ lone hit came with one out in the top of the first, a single to left-center by Zac Deymaz. Their only other base-runner came with two out in the inning when Andrew Reynolds reached on a third-strike wild pitch. Kehrees then retired seven in a row and finished with six strikeouts. Ransdell set down all six batters he faced, four on strikeouts.
The Hornets took a 5-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Jake Jackson led off with a walk and Tyler Pickett was hit by a pitch to set the table for Walker who doubled in the first run. Joey Winiecki followed with a fly to center that would’ve easily scored Pickett but when the ball dropped, Walker scored too and Winiecki wound up at third.
With one out, Jordan Knight banged a drive off the base of the wall in center field for a triple to make it 4-0 then Guarno drove a single up the middle to plate Knight.
In the second, Trent Daniel walked and advanced to second on a balk. Jackson singled him home.
Winiecki singled and stole a base to start the third. Kehrees singled him in and took second on a late throw to the plate. An out later, Guarno doubled courtesy runner Tim Bearden home to make it 8-0. With two down, Guarno raced home on Daniel’s flair to right.
Walker made it a 10-run lead with his one-out blast to left center in the bottom of the fourth.