HOT SPRINGS – After suffering their lone loss on the season and scoring just four runs in two games on Sunday, the Bryant Everett Black Sox made up for their lack of scoring with a 19-0 win over host Lakeside – advancing them to the State Tournament in Cabot – and an 11-2 win over the team which gave Everett its only loss, the Little Rock Cobras, in the Zone 4 Tournament at Lakeside High School.
“It’s a brand new day,” Everett Coach Tyler Brown said. “Sunday is behind us. Everybody knows we suffered our first defeat. We only scored four runs in 14 innings [Sunday] and that’s something we haven’t done all year. We usually live and die off of our offense.”
The Black Sox (26-1) were definitely living on the offense on Monday as leadoff man Drew Tipton and No. 2 batter Dalton Holt got used to rounding the bases. Consecutive singles in the top of the first by the duo set up the first of left-handed batting Evan Lee’s five RBI in the game. Tipton scored the first of his four runs on Lee’s single to center, and Holt scored his first of his five runs in the game on Hunter Oglesby’s RBI ground out for an early 2-0 lead after one.
Lakeside pitcher, lefty Blaine Porterfield, got the first two outs in the top of the second inning, but Tipton and Holt followed with walks, a wild pitch moved them up a base, and Lee would get RBIs two and three with a single to right field to make it a 4-0. Blake Patterson and Devin Dupree also walked, and Oglesby and Harrison Dale followed with RBI doubles to make it an 8-0 Bryant lead, already putting the game out of reach for Lakeside.
“I tell people all the time were not built for defense, defense is a plus, but we’re built for offense,” Brown said. “I tell our kids it’s going to take 10 to 15 runs to beat us. That’s what we go with every time we go out there. I had a couple people ask me if I was worried about our approach at the plate (after Sunday). Not at all. Everything at the dish is perfectly fine. We’re going to go up there and hit the baseball. That’s just what we do.”
On the mound for Bryant, Lee started, struck out four and walked one in his two innings of work, and usual catcher Trey Breeding, who rarely pitches, threw a perfect three innings in just 19 pitches. Lee only threw 33 pitches, which will allow him to start against Texarkana today.
“No freebies and that’s big,” Brown spoke of Breeding’s outing. “That’s his third outing. He looked good. He was throwing his second pitch for a strike and he did what we asked him to. Go in there and fill it up. Let your defense work. Defense is getting there.”
Lee went 3 for 3 with five RBI, Holt went 2 for 3 with five runs and Tipton went 2 for 4 with four runs scored. Brandan Warner went 2 for 3 with an RBI, and Patterson and Oglesby each contributed three RBI.
In Monday’s second game for Bryant against the Cobras, Everett was down 3-1 after the first inning before the Black Sox tied it in the second inning at 3-3, and then gradually tacked the runs on for the 11-3 win. Dupree relieved Oglesby on the mound in first inning and would pitch 6.2 scoreless innings.
Tipton scored three more runs on the day, going 2 for 4, Lee had three more RBI, going 2 for 3, and Oglesby went 3 for 4 with three runs scored.
“We made it to State and that was a goal, but I want to win,” Brown said. “We’re winners. That’s what we are at Bryant. We’re winners and we want to win this tournament.”
Everett will take on Texarkana today at 6 p.m. and will have to defeat the Razorbacks twice for the Zone 4 Championship.