Defense fails Black Sox in tourney loss

The Bryant Black Sox made five errors en route to five unearned runs in a 5-4 loss to the Hub City Bombers (Hattiesburg, Miss.) in the first game of the Mid-South Regional Tournament on Thursday morning in New Orleans. The Black Sox played this morning in a loser's bracket game against Piedmont, Okla., and Bryant has to win at any chance to advance to the American Legion World Series in Shelby, N.C. Results will be in tomorrow's Courier.
Two errors in the top of the first inning led to two unearned runs for the Bombers for an early 2-0 deficit for the Black Sox.
Bryant (33-6) responded in the bottom of the third when Ozzie Hurt walked to start the inning and scored an unearned run of his own when leadoff man Hunter Mayall singled to right field. An error by the right fielder allowed Hurt to score to get within 2-1 and Mayall went to third base. Mayall would later score on a sacrifice fly by Landon Pickett to tie the game at 2-apiece.
The game would remain tied until the bottom of the fifth inning when Mayall tripled to lead off the inning and scored on Tyler Brown's ground out to second base to give the Black Sox a first-time lead of 3-2. Bryant had runners at first and second with one out, but Pickett hit into a 5-4-3 double play to end the Black Sox threat.
The Bombers would retake the lead in the top of the sixth when a single, walk and passed ball put runners at second and third with no outs. Tyler Nelson's second error of the game at shortstop led to another run and Hub City would score another on an RBI single by Colton Caver to give the lead back to the Bombers at 4-3.
Another error by the Black Sox led to another unearned run for the Bombers to make it a 5-3 deficit after the top of the seventh.
Bryant would make it 5-4 in the bottom of the inning when Hayden Daniel singled, went to second on a passed ball and advanced to third on Hurt's sacrifice bunt. Daniel scored on Mayall's RBI ground out.
The Black Sox would put the leadoff man on in the bottom of the ninth when Hayden Lessenberry walked, but a strike out and two ground outs ended the game to put the Black Sox in the loser's bracket.
Bryant's defense spoiled a great effort by starting pitcher Jordan Taylor. All five runs he gave up were unearned as he gave up six hits and one walk in eight innings pitched, and struck out eight.
Both teams had seven hits and the Black Sox were led by Mayall's 2 for 5 day with two runs and an RBI. Brown went 1 for 3 with an RBI, Lessenberry also went 1 for 3, and Taylor, Daniel and Marcus Wilson each went 1 for 4.

* Published earlier today in the Saline Courier. A selection of our local sports stories is available here, but for complete coverage of local, state and national sports, subscribe to our print edition.