Rams can't get final run against #2-seeded Bryan in 6-5 loss in AAC Tourney
The Rams outhit the Lions 12-10 in the loss
Sports Information Department BC
May 1, 2012
Bluefield College Athletics
Sports Information Deparment
Kingsport, Tenn.- The Bluefield Rams dropped a late heartbreaking loss to Bryan College 6-5 on Tuesday afternoon at the Hunter Wright Stadium in opening round action of the 2012 AAC Men's Baseball Tournament on a beautiful, hot day in Kingsport, Tennessee.
The Rams went down quickly in two straight innings at the plate, while Bryan had an early opportunity to jump on top of the Rams in the 2nd inning. Starting pitcher Matt Whidden gave up two hits to lead off the inning including a double by Doug Stroup to put runners at second and third with just one out.
Whidden came back with a big challenge though by striking out the next two batters to retire the Lions side to squeek out of an early bind.
After an early walk in the bottom of the 3rd, Bryan's Tyler Latham looped a single into short right field to put runners at the corners. On the very next batter, Whidden threw a four-pitch walk to load the bases. Up next, DaWayne Boyd would hit a RBI sacrifice-fly to right field to give Bryan a 1-0 lead as Bluefield would retire the final batter to get out of the inning.
In the fourth, Bryan was given a free pass with two batters getting on via the walk. After a fielders choice to first base, Dickerson's throw to home wouldn't be enough as Bryan slid in to take a 2-0 lead. Into the fifth inning, the Rams were looking to make some headway with their bats, but went down straight batters in the frame.
Bryan led their 5th inning off with a stand-up triple by Clawson, followed by a RBI base hit to quickly jump on top 3-0 with no outs. And with three more singles, Bryan added three more runs to extend its lead to 6-0. Taylor Marshall would replace Matt Whidden for Bluefield on the mound to get out of the inning.
Bluefield responded in the 6th with two hits and an error by Bryan to start. The Rams had bases loaded when Kaleb Long popped out for out number one. Cameron Hynes would battle through his second walk of the game and helped get Bluefield on the board to make it a 6-1 game. Just a batter later, Andrew Dickerson's piercing 2-RBI liner past the shortshop would score two runs at a play at the plate to draw Bryan's lead back to just 6-3 through 5 1/2 innings.
Taylor Marshall battled through four at-bats to get two outs before being replaced by lefty Andrew Kirks in the bottom of the sixth. On one batter, Kirks flied out the Bryan batter to right field to retire the side.
Bluefield added a run in the seventh inning after getting the bases loaded for the second consecutive inning. After a long battled at-bat by 2B Zac Goodyear, the senior walked scoring Zac Russell-Myers cutting the lead to just two runs at 6-4 heading into the seventh inning stretch.
The Lions looked to be in position to add to their lead in the seventh inning after Bluefield allow three different runners on no hits throughout the inning, but Anthony Garza came in to relieve Andrew Kirks to get out of the inning stranding two Bryan runners.
Bluefield went into the ninth inning down two runs. With one out, Russell-Myers and Joe Gatewood both got singles to put runners at the corners. Immediately follow, Kaleb Long stretched a high fly ball to deep right field on a RBI sac-fly to score Myers and make it a 6-5 game. Goodyear stretched the game with a single as well to put two runners on again.
On a 3-2 pitch to Cameron Hynes, the thirdbaseman eyed his third walk of the game go by the plate to load the bases. Andrew Dickerson was up next after driving in two earlier runs. He would watch a called-third strike go by though to end the game as Bryan snuck away with a 6-5 win over Bluefield.
Russell-Myers went 4 for 4 on the night with three runs scored, while Andrew Dickerson went 2 for 5 with 2 RBI's.
Bluefield used a combination of four different pitchers scattered throughout the contest. Starter Matt Whidden earned the loss on the evening contest.
The Rams will look to bounce back after a competitive finish to Tuesday's game when they face Montreat College on Wednesday at 11am in Kingsport.