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Bulldogs nip Bears in WO-S tourney

By Caleb Adams

Orange Leader

 

WEST ORANGE – The Little Cypress-Mauriceville Bears fell to the Jasper Bulldogs 2-0 at Ronnie Anderson Park in West Orange-Stark at the Certa-Bearden Tournament Thursday in a game that featured solid pitching and strong defense by both teams.

Both teams’ pitchers, Greyson Williams for Jasper and Anthony Bandiero for LC-M, had great outings, both getting out of jams a few times and it was ultimately a battle of attrition between the two.

Bandiero would suffer the first run against him in the third but that would come from two great hits by the Bulldogs, not really a mistake. LC-M would get more hits early, but Williams found ways to get batters out with runners in scoring position.

The Bears would find hits in just about every inning, but had trouble turning those hits into runs. Williams clamped down with runners on and forced the Bears to beat him with hits and not mistakes. The Bears would get two runners on first and third in the fifth inning, but Williams would pitch two grounders to get himself out of the situation without allowing any runs. The Bears would find eight hits, but couldn’t turn any of them into runs.

Williams went five innings for the Bulldogs, holding the Bears to no runs on six hits and just 61 pitches. No strikeouts recorded, but Williams used his pitches to get the Bears to ground out and fly out, which is how he was able to keep his pitch count so low each inning.

The Bulldogs found the game’s first run in the top of the third, just after finding their first hits of the game. Heath Pantoja connected with one to find the team’s first hit. With two outs Drew Marshall hit a liner up the middle to score Pantoja from second base, who advanced on a grounder the hitter before as the Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead after three and half innings complete.

Jasper found some cushion for their small lead in the top of the sixth inning. Aiden Moore would get hit by a pitch with two outs and steal second base to put himself in scoring position. Clayton Stephenson would hit a dinker to right field, but the Bears misplayed it and Moore would score from second base. That’s all that Jasper would find as they took a 2-0 lead heading to the bottom of the sixth inning.

Bears fall in the first game of the tournament, but it wasn’t without finding some hits. The biggest issue was not being able to bring runners around after finding a way on base.

Ty Moreland was 2-for-3 for the Bears and Ashton Landry was 2-for-3 with a double.