TEXARKANA — Like Dragons in a lair, the Genoa Central AA American Legion team, which is[more] basically the same as the high school squad that dominated the Class 3A State Tournament, awaits in the wilds outside of Texarkana. On Tuesday, May 29, the Sport Shop Black Sox Junior team of Bryant ventured into the area. The Dragons ambushed the Sox, basically a team of 15- and 16-year olds, and swept a doubleheader 13-5 and 13-6.
The Sox dropped to 2-4 on the season but all four of the losses have been to Senior (19-and-under) or AA (18-and-under) teams. They were scheduled to play a Junior team from Sheridan tonight but the game was postponed due to a scheduling conflict at Sheridan. The Bryant team will return to action against Junior squads at Little Rock Blue on Tuesday, June 5, and against Benton on Wednesday, June 6.
In the opening game, the Dragons scored in every inning. With four runs in the first, one in the second, another in the third and three in the fourth, they held a 9-0 lead before Bryant got on the board.
The Sox put two runners on base in the second when Hunter Oglesby singled, advanced on a wild pitch and took third on Jimbo Seale’s hit. In the third, Dalton Holt doubled and reached third on a passed ball but was stranded.
In the top of the fifth, Collins Fredriksson led off with a walk. After he was picked off, Holt drew a free pass and Harrison Dale found the gap in right-center for an RBI triple. He came home on a groundout by Dakota Besancon to make it 9-2.
Genoa Central struck for three more runs in the bottom of the inning but the Black Sox kept scrapping. In the top of the sixth, walks to Weston Jones and Braylon Mays set the table for Seale who delivered an line-drive single to center to drive in a run, though Mays was thrown out trying to get to third.
The Dragons got that run back in the bottom of the inning. In the seventh, Dale singled and Besancon walked. After a double steal, a wild pitch allowed Dale to score. Another errant delivery provided Besancon a chance to score as well. Jones drew a two-out walk but was stranded as the game concluded.
It was a rough game for the Sox defensively. They were charged with eight errors.
In the five-inning nightcap, three errors over the first two innings helped Genoa Central build an 11-1 lead including an eight-run second.
It was just 3-1 after Bryant dented the plate in the top of the second. C.J. Phillips singled, advanced on an errant pickoff throw then scored on a single by Seale.
The Black Sox peeled a run off the 11-1 margin in the top of the third. Holt reached on an error and stole second. With two down, Besancon singled and Oglesby ripped a double down the right-field line to drive in the run. Besancon tried to score on a grounder to short by Phillips but was thrown out. Seale flew to center to end the inning.
Taking advantage of a trio of walks, Genoa Central scored twice in the bottom of the third to make it 13-2. Bryant’s fourth began with a walk to Fredriksson. He advanced on a wild pitch, moved to third on a groundout and scored on another wild pitch before Holt singled.
The only inning of the evening that Genoa Central did not score was the bottom of the fourth as Oglesby, the second Bryant pitcher of the game, fanned two around a two-out single.
Bryant rallied for three runs in the top of the fifth, taking advantage of walks to Besancon, Phillips, Andrew Kincaid, Fredriksson and Mays.