The Bryant 9-year-old Cal Ripken All-Stars have advanced to the winners bracket finals of their State tournament in Magniolia. They were set to play Benton this afternoon for a spot in the championship round of the tourney.
The 9s opened with a 18-0 win over El Dorado on Friday. They knocked off Marion 12-2 on Saturday then drubbed Sylvan Hills 10-0 on Sunday to reach today's game.
Details of the tournament will be forthcoming upon its conclusion.
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The Bryant 7-year-old All-Stars, playing in the 8-year-old Cal Ripken State Tournament received a rugged draw opening against a pair of strong 8-year-old teams. A 4-1 loss to Little Rock Junior Deputy's 8s on Friday was followed by a 9-1 loss to the Sylvan Hills Bombers, another 8-year-old team. In the second loss, Bryant was within 3-1 through three innings before a six-run fourth put Sylvan Hills in control.
The 2008 Babe Ruth World Series champions for 13-year-olds are now 14. This year, they will be the host team for the Southwest Regional Tournament at Bryant High School field, with a chance to return to World Series play.
The 14-year-old All-Stars and all the other squads from the Bryant Athletic Association are now set for the post-season with expectations for the continued success at District, State, Regional and National levels.Several of the Cal Ripken League teams (ages 6 through 12) begin District Tournament play on Friday, June 26.Here are the teams:[more]
• 6 year olds, coached by Matt Orender, include Luke Bessire, Clay Curtis, Cooper Davis, Josh Day, Peyton Dillon, Gavin Glasgow, Austin Ledbetter, Jagger Littleton, Justin Orender, Brett Pennington, Austin Schroeder, and Blaine Sears.There’s no District tourney for the 6’s. They advance directly to State tournament play beginning on July 3 at Sherwood. Regionals begin July 23 at El Dorado.
• 7 year olds, coached by Mike Meaders with assistance from Blake Knight and Bill Drennan, include Cade Drennan, Kelub Freeman, Will Graves, Hayden Hilson, Rhett James, Tyler Jordan, Braden Knight, Tyler LaRue, Brayden Lester, Jake Meadors, Riley Morales, and Shane Small.District tournament play for the 7’s begins June 26, at Hot Springs Boys Club. Bryant plays Pine Bluff Seabrook in its first-round game. The 7’s and 8’s automatically qualify for State which will commence July 10 at Sherwood with Regionals in Lake Village beginning July 30.
• 8-year-olds, coached by Michael Catton, include Logan Catton, Logan Chambers, Jake Cowell, Tristan Day, Cade Dupree, Logan Grant, Cobe Greiner, Sawyer Holt, Ryan Lessenberry, Nathan McFarland, Will McEntire and Garett Nguyen.The 8’s also compete at the District Tournament at Hot Springs Boys Club beginning June 26, opening against Hot Springs.
• 9-year-olds, coached by Bill Kyzer, include Myers Buck, Luke Curtis, Caleb Dorsey, Brooks Ellis, Hunter Hilson, Dylan Johnson, Preston Kyzer, Hayden Mills, Blake Pennington, Matthew Sandidge, Scott Schmidt, Larry Thompson and Cooper Wright.The 9’s will compete in District play beginning June 26 at Pine Bluff Seabrook. Their opening opponent will be Benton. The State tourney will be at Magnolia beginning July 10, with automatic entry. Regionals are set for Gulfport, Miss., July 30.
• 10-year-olds, coached by Jerry East, include Logan Allen, Drew Brown, Zach Chambers, Austin Despain, Jake East, Kade Endl, Dylan Hurt, Austin Kelly, Hayden Knowles, Samuel McFarland, Garrett Misenheimer, Aaron Orender and Diego Vargas. The District tourney for 10’s will begin June 26 at Benton. Bryant will open against Hot Springs Village. The State tourney will be at Lake Village starting July 10 with Regionals at Abbeville, La., beginning July 30. World Series: Lamar, Colo., Aug. 15.
• 11-year-olds, coached by Bryon Glenn, include Connor Alliston, Bailey Bowers, Luke Brantley, Chase Brooks, Zach Byars, Jordan Gentry, Caleb McElyea, Liam Miller, Connor Riley, Connor Tatum, Matthew Vangilder and Hunter Winkles.District for the 11’s will be June 26 when they open against Hot Springs Village at the Hot Springs Boys Club. No qualifying is required for State which will be July 10 at Cabot. Regionals will be in Jonesboro July 30.
• 12-year-olds who play on the diamond with 46-foot pitching distance and 60-foot basepaths, coached by Sam Breeding, include Sebastian Arias, Dakota Besancon, Trey Breeding, Brandon Carter, Destin Davis, Tre Devis, Austin Green, Clifton Hampton, Andrew Kincaid, Blaine Knight, Hunter Lawhon and Jimbo Seale.There is no District tournament for this age group. State begins July 10 at McGehee with Regionals at Monticello July 29. World Series: Winchester, Mass., Aug. 13.
• 12-year-olds who play on the diamond with 50-foot pitching distance and 70-foot basepaths, coached by Danny Jackson, include Ben Bruick, Britan Crouch, Devin Dupree, Hunter Fugitt, Jason Hastings, Dalton Holt, Zachary Jackson, Hunter Oglesby, Blake Patterson, Drew Tipton, Jacob Ward, Brandon Warner and John Winn.State will be held at the Junior Deputy park in Little Rock starting July 10 with Regionals in Springdale July 30. World Series: Aberdeen, Md., Aug. 15.
• 13-year-olds, coached by Jason Thompson, include Wesley Akers, Justin Emmerling, Trevor Ezell, Zach Graddy, Tyler Green, Spencer Kilgore, Jonathan Lyman, Austin Miller, Joe Murdock, Tanner Rich, Ian Shuttleworth, Korey Thompson and Chase Tucker.Bryant will host the 13-year-old Babe Ruth District tourney starting July 3. The Bryant team will open against Hot Spring County. The State tourney will be July 17 in Monticello with Regional play commencing Aug. 6, in Bentonville. World Series: Murray, Utah, Aug. 22.
• 14-year-olds, coached by Jimmy Parker, include Zach Cambron, Evan Castleberry, Hayden Daniel, Josh Davis, Evan Etheridge, Tyler Green, Riley Hall, Blain Jackson, Tyler Nelson, Cameron Price, Daniel Richards, Trent Rivers, Tryce Schalchlin, Justin Vincent and Marcus Wilson.No District tourney will be held. The State tourney is in Benton beginning July 17. Bryant will compete in the Regional as the host team beginning Aug. 6. World Series: Appleton, Wis., Aug. 22.
• 15-year-olds, coached by Wayne Taylor, include Seth Alkire, Jared Archer, Dylan Cross, Ozzie Hurt, Tyler Jamison, Luke McConnell, Quinton Motto, Trevor Paige, Josh Pultro, Alex Rowlan, Stoney Stephens, Jordan Taylor and Matthew Welch.District play begins July 3 at White Hall, State on July 17, at Pine Bluff and Regionals Aug. 6 at Siloam Springs. World Series: Longview, Wash., Aug. 21.
Arkansas Finest, a seventh-grade boys basketball team featuring four players from Bryant recently won the Hoopfest USA State Championship in Hot Springs. Team members include, front from left, Justice Bryant of England, Hunter Holder of Bryant, Larry Stephens of Little Rock Christian, Trenton Deloach of Little Rock Episcopal and Caleb Strain of Bryant; back row, coach James Scoggins of Bryant, Luke Vincent of Benton, Blake Bowlin of Benton, Mitch Scoggins of Bryant, Samonte Wallace of Benton and Brian Reed of Bryant.
Wet conditions shut down two of the four fields at Ashley Park on Thursday night, the opening night of the preseason tournament for all divisions of the Bryant Athletic Association’s baseball season. The makeup games will be held Sunday afternoon.[more]
Bryant baseball includes Babe Ruth ages 13-15, Cal Ripken ages 10-
Springtime in Bryant means that youth baseball teams are preparing for opening day. It seems that the Thompson Electric Rangers are more than ready.
The Rangers entered the Little Oaks 9-and-under live arm tournament and came back home with a championship. They defeated Union Bank 5-2 in the championship game to wrap up the tournament a perfect 4-0.
Team members include Austin Dulling, Garith East, Reese Graham, Logan Grant, Sawyer Holt, Matthew Sandidge, Noah Southard, Ethan Thompson and Cooper Wright.[more]
The highlight of the final game came in the top of the first with no outs. Union Bank was leading 1-0 with two runners on and their cleanup batter at the plate, appearing ready to add to the advantage. But Logan Grant, the Rangers’ starting pitcher, was able to strike him out. After the strikeout, the two Union Bank base runners were crossed up in an attempted double steal. Both runners ended up at second base. As one of them tried to run back to first, Rangers’ catcher Garith East alertly threw back to first baseman Matthew Sandidge who had positioned himself off of the bag and made the quick tag. He threw over to third baseman Austin Dulling who tagged the runner out as had tried to sneak his way from second to third during the play at first.
If you are scoring at home, that’s a K-2-3-5 triple play!
After the first inning excitement, Grant and East shared pitching duties and combined to give up only one run over the next two innings. The game was called due to time restraints with the Rangers leading and Cooper Wright at the plate.
The tournament was originally planned for March 9 and 10 but was postponed to March 16 and 17. Tournament director Sammy Meeks worked around the bad weather and ended up with beautiful, dry conditions and 70 degree baseball.
Thanks to Coach Jim Sandidge for the tournament update.
A trip to Memphis resulted in a high intensity soccer thrill ride for members of the Bryant Soccer Association. The coed U12 team, the Bryant Bad Dogs, made their way into the finals of the 8v8 Gold Division in Blues City Blowout 2009 in Memphis, March 13-15. The final game pitted the Bad Dogs against Bartlett SC 97 from Tennessee. The game ended in regulation with a 2-2 tie. At the end of the first 5-minute overtime, the game was still tied which forced another overtime.
The score remained locked at the end of the second overtime period as well. The tournament rules state that at the end of the second overtime period, a kicks-from-mark penalty-type shootout. A champion still could not be crowned as the game remained knotted.
Finally, the game went into a sudden death shootout. Bryant goal keeper Alex Denker made several dramatic bid saves in sudden death and, at last, Jack Buck made the goal that sealed the victory and the tournament championship for the Bad Dogs.[more]
The team, coached by Ishwor Gurung and Jeffery Southard, was the lone representative from Arkansas. Three teams competed from Mississippi and two teams from Tennessee participated.
The Bryant Bad Dogs team members are Jebry Alhajjaj, Michael Betyo, Jack Buck, Grant Cason, Alex Denker, Tana Duling, Chris Godwin, Josh Gray, Krishna Gurung, Alex Huber, Allison Hughes, Logan Moore, Ethan Southard, and Dylan Wolf.
In other age divisions, the U11 girls were represented by the Bryant Blue Thunder and the U14 Coed division included the Bryant Raiders. Both teams reached the semi-finals.
Members of the Blue Thunder and Raiders are encouraged to submit team photos and player names to [email protected]
The 2009 Little Oaks tournament in Mabelvale came down to two 9-and-under teams from Bryant. In the pitching machine tournament, the Diamond Sports Diamondbacks and River Valley Pool White Sox squared off in the finals of the winner's bracket on Saturday, March 7.
Diamond Sports' first baseman Brandon Hopkins hit a solo homer over the left field fence to break a 3-3 tie, but River Valley rallied to win 8-4 and advance to the championship game.
The Diamondbacks then faced the Heartland Bank Cardinals, who earlier had posted a 9-7 win over the Thompson Electric A's, in the finals of the loser's bracket. Diamond Sports held on for an 11-8 win as they survived a bases-loaded jam in the bottom of the fifth inning by getting consecutive force outs at the plate to end the game, each going from pitcher Will McEntire to catcher Ryan Lessenberry.
In a rematch with River Valley Pools in the finals, Diamond Sports jumped to a 5-0 lead heading into the third inning. The White Sox rallied for two runs in the third and then got three more, all with two outs, in the bottom of the fourth to tie the game.
Still tied heading to the bottom of the fifth, River Valley claimed the championship by a score of 6-5 when Kale Kimbrough singled and then scored when Jessie Windemaker lined a ball up the middle that eluded the centerfielder and rolled all the way to the fence.
Thanks to Madison McEntire for the tournament update.
Each year the popularity of competitive swimming in Bryant grows. The Bryant Barracudas offer age divisions for swimmers 6 and under; 7-8; 9-10; 11-12; 13-14; 15-18. Events include 6 and under kickboard, relays, free style, back stroke, 7 and up breast stroke and a 100 meter individual medley.
The Barracudas compete against other area swim teams and have meets each week on Saturdays and/or Monday evenings. Other teams include Cabot, Lonoke, Lakewood, Maumelle, Otter Creek and Sherwood.
Each age division is broken down into gold, silver and bronze divisions to ensure that the swimmers are competing against others who are at similar levels.
Parent representative Jill Dabbs said, "This is a great opportunity for any swimmer that would like to someday be on their high school swim team. The summer league will prepare athletes for high school tryouts."
Registration for the team is now under way. To register go to www.salinecountyswimteam.com.
New this year is a second practice pool in the Midtown area in Bryant. This pool will be used in conjunction with the pool at Longhills Golf Club.
Coach Todd Hunter will be returning from Houston, Texas to coach the Barracudas again this summer.
Bryant baseball and softball are gearing up to begin very soon. Arrangements are currently being made, schedules are being devised, rosters are being finalized and preseason tournaments are being planned.
The Bryant Athletic Association has announced a baseball players’ clinic put on by Bryant Hornets head coach Kirk Bock, BHS assistants and players to be held Saturday, March 7. The cost is $25 and will be at the Bryant High School baseball field.
The BAA preseason tournament will begin March 26. Opening ceremonies and team photos are scheduled for Saturday, April 18.
For more information visit www.bryantbaseball.org.
Also, the Bryant Softball Association has scheduled opening day for March 30 with the season running through May. Teams range from ages 6 and under through 16.
The Association’s preseason tournament will be held March 20-21 and is open to all ages.
Teams are shaping up and practices are beginning for an exciting 2009 season.
For more information visit www.bryantsoftballassociation.com/index.htm.