Leader Blues

Friday, July 10, 2009

SPORTS >> Big fifth inning lifts Continental past Centennial

By JASON KING
Leader sportswriter

The good news for Cabot Centennial Bank was that they held Little Rock Continental Express scoreless for six innings on Tuesday. The bad news was that in that one other inning, Team CEI put up a big number.

Little Rock took a 7-3 win in American Legion senior play at Brian Wade Conrade Memorial Baseball Field. Team CEI scored all seven runs in the top of the fifth inning, breaking open what had been a pitcher’s duel up to that point.

Cabot starter Tyler Erickson gave up only one hit and fanned six through the first four frames until Little Rock got him for four hits in the top of the fifth. Erickson also gave up a walk that led to another score.

Continental Express starter Lance Black earned the win, allowing three hits and two earned runs and striking out five. Clint Green closed the final two innings for Little Rock, and gave up a single by Cabot catcher Ben Wainwright in the bottom of the sixth inning before striking out four of the final six batters he faced.

Chase Beasley took over for Erickson when things got sticky in the top of the fifth, and gave way to C.J. Jacoby in the seventh.

Beasley gave up a single in the top of the fifth and a double in the sixth before striking out two and picking off a runner at first to retire the side, while Jacoby gave up a double to the CEI cleanup man before retiring the final three.

But even with the solid defensive effort by Centennial Bank, their bats could not make up the difference.

Ty Steele set up the first Cabot score in the bottom of the fourth when he tripled to right field, and scored on Sam Bates’ line single to right. That put Centennial Bank up 1-0, but Little Rock’s next turn made that lead short-lived.

The top six of Continental Express’ order scored in the top of the fifth.
After its opening score, Little Rock loaded the bases with a pair of singles and a hit-batsman. Jim Manney’s triple to the fence in right scored all three to put Team CEI up 4-1.

Cabot added two more runs in the fifth. Wainwright and Chase Thompson were hit by a tiring Black to put runners at first and second. Leadoff batter Joe Bryant scored Wainwright with a fielder’s choice, and Thompson came in moments later on an error to set the final margin.

Drew Burks got the first hit for Cabot in the bottom of the second inning with one out, but a strikeout and a groundout left him stranded. Wainwright singled with two outs in the sixth but was also left standing on the path.

Continental Express finished with eight hits while Centennial Bank had four.