July 18 in Bryant athletic history: 2010

Photo by James Larry Harper

Mayall’s blast keys Senior Sox’ comeback against Continental

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).

By Rob Patrick

This time, the two extra innings were good for the Bryant Black Sox Senior American Legion team.

Trailing 5-4 after seven, the Sox rallied behind a clutch two-run homer by Hunter Mayall to survive another day and eliminate Little Rock Continental Express, 7-6, at the Zone 4 Tournament Saturday.

While Bryant survived, Benton advanced to the winners bracket final by upsetting top-seeded Pine Bluff Simmons 4-2 Saturday afternoon. But, in the winners bracket final, Texarkana outlasted Benton 9-4 to advance to the championship round. Texarkana, which rallied in the final two innings to beat Bryant on Friday, clinched one of the league’s two State bids in the process.

On Sunday, Bryant, plagued by injuries and ailments that have forced coaches Darren Hurt and Wayne Taylor to piece things together on the fly, will take on Pine Bluff Simmons at 2 p.m. with the winner surviving to take on Benton in the losers bracket final at 5. The late-game victor would advance to play Texarkana for the championship while nabbing the second State bid.[more]

Photo by James Larry Harper

Though he allowed a pair of runners to score that he inherited in the bottom of the fourth, Landon Pickett wound up contributing 3 2/3 innings of scoreless relief to pick up the victory on the mound. After surrendering a double in the bottom of the ninth, Pickett gave way to Jordan Taylor and, despite a pair of errors that allowed a run to score, the Sox closed out the win.

Taylor induced a liner to Evan Jobe in right to end the game with the potential tying run at third and what would’ve been the winning run at second.

Taylor also had four hits in the game. Mayall added three and drove in three. Chris Joiner contributed two hits.

John Mark Osborne, who turned in a gutsy performance throwing 144 pitches in going the route, helped himself with three hits. Daniel Imbro added two for Continental.

Bryant had scored first in the game. The Sox had loaded the bases in the top of the first with nobody out. Mayall had doubled, Caleb Garrett was hit by a pitch and Taylor singled. But consecutive grounders to third resulted in forces at the plate. A comebacker ended the inning in frustrating fashion.

In the second, Lucas Castleberry drew a walk and Tyler Brown sacrificed him to second. Evan Jobe lined a single to center to put runners at first and third. Mayall then yanked the first pitch he saw into the right-center gap. Castleberry scored easily and it looked like Jobe would too. With Mayall looking for a triple, Jobe slipped and fell as he was rounding third. Little Rock catcher Jacob Green whipped a throw to third to retire Jobe as he tried to scramble by to the bag. A relay to second wound up getting Mayall out as he tried to reverse course and get back to second after getting more than halfway to third.

Photo by James Larry Harper

The unusual doubleplay ended the inning with Bryant leading 1-0.

Continental answered with three in the bottom of the second. Green reached on an error, taking second. He advanced to third on a wild pitch and scored on a single by Imbro. Danny Aday was issued a four-pitch walk by Bryant starter Brady Butler.

But, on a nice play by Castleberry charging in from second, the Sox turned a doubleplay.

They just couldn’t seem to be able to get that third out. Osborne singled in Imbro, Corbin Knell walked then Ivan Tate’s grounder to short was misplayed and the Express had a 3-1 lead.

Osborne shackled the Sox on just one hit — a single by Taylor in the third — over the next two innings. But, in the bottom of the fourth, Continental struck again. This time, Osborne started things with a single to left. Knell sacrificed then Tate drew a walk. A double steal put both runners in scoring position. And, after Josh Alberius walked, the bases were loaded.

Pickett relieved Butler and was greeted by Justin Williams’ RBI single to center. Green’s sacrifice fly had the Express up 5-1 before the Bryant right-hander got the final out.The Sox broke through in the fifth with two crucial runs to stem the tide. With two down, Taylor and Joiner lashed consecutive singles. Butler followed with a single to right to make it 5-3. He advanced to second when the ball was booted in the outfield then Brennan Bullock drew a walk.

But Osborne escaped by striking out Castleberry to end the inning.

Still, the Sox were in striking distance.

Photo by James Larry Harper

Pickett settled in and worked around a two-out infield hit by Osborne in the fifth and overcame a one-out single in the sixth then another in the seventh. In the eighth, He hit Knell with a pitch and, after Tate sacrificed, Alberius drew a walk.

But, with the help of a nice play by Joiner on a foul pop behind the plate, Pickett got out of the inning.

In the meantime, Bryant had whittled one run off the margin in the sixth. Brown reached second on a dropped drive to left. Jobe was hit by a pitch and, an out later, Garrett hit into a force at second. By beating the relay to first, Garrett picked up an RBI to make it 5-4.

The game went to the eighth that way. With one out, Caleb Milam drew a pinch-hit walk. He remained at first with two down when Mayall dropped the bat head on a low inside fastball and shot it down the line in left for a huge two-run jack that gave the Sox a lead they would not relinquish.

In the ninth, Bryant added an insurance run. Taylor rolled his fourth hit into right and Joiner scorched a liner to left for a single. Osborne, his pitch-count mounting, struck out the next two batters before Castleberry came through in the clutch with a single to left that drove in the run. The ball was misplayed in the outfield allowing Joiner to reach third and Castleberry to pull into second. But they were stranded as Osborne got Ozzie Hurt to pop to first.

The bottom of the ninth opened with Imbro’s double and the entrance of Taylor from short to pitch. Aday followed with a hard grounder to third that ricocheted off Pickett right to Castleberry at short. Imbro broke to third after hesitating and Castleberry alertly threw to Pickett at third for an out.

Aday stole second but Taylor struck out Ben Gipson and appeared to have the game in hand when Osborne grounded to third but an error put runners at first and third. Osborne stole second uncontested then Knell hit a slow roller to the left side. Pickett charged and made a nice play but his throw was errant and Aday scored to make it 7-6.

And the Express had the tying and winning runs in scoring position. Tate hit the ball hard but Jobe charged in and grabbed it to end the game and Continental’s season.


Zone 4 Senior American Legion Tournament

Black Sox ab r h bi Continental Express ab r h bi

Mayall, 1b 5 1 3 3 Tate, rf 4 1 0 0

Garrrett, cf 4 0 0 1 Alberius, ss 2 0 1 0

Taylor, ss-p 5 2 4 0 Williams, cf 5 0 1 1

Joiner, c 4 1 2 1 J.Green, c 3 1 0 1

Butler, p 2 0 0 0 Imbro, 3b 4 1 2 1

Pickett, p-3b 3 0 1 1 Aday, 2b 4 1 1 0

Bullock, lf 4 0 0 0 C.Green, lf 3 0 0 0

Castleberry,2b-3b-ss 3 1 1 1 Gipson, lf 2 0 0 0

Brown, 3b 2 1 0 0 Osborne, p 5 2 3 1

Milam, ph 0 1 0 0 Knell, 1b 2 0 0 0

Hurt, 2b1000

Jobe, rf3010

Totals 36 7 12 7 Totals 34 6 8 4

BRYANT 010 021 021 — 7

Little Rock 030 200 001 — 6

E—Brown, Taylor, Joiner, Tate, C.Green, Gipson, Pickett 2. DP—Bryant 2, Little Rock 1. LOB—Bryant 10, Little Rock 13. 2B—Mayall 2, Taylor, Joiner, Imbro. HR—Mayall. SB—Tate 2, Williams, Joiner, Aday 2, Osborne 2. S—Brown, Imbro, Knell, Tate. SF—J.Green.

Pitching ip r er h bb so


Butler 4.1 5 2 3 6 1

Pickett (W) 3.2 0 0 5 1 3

Taylor (S) 1 1 0 0 0 1

Little Rock

Osborne (L) 9 6 3 12 5 4

HBP—Garrett, Jobe (by Osborne), Knell (by Pickett). WP—Bulter.

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