By Randy Bruce
McALESTER, Ok. — The Durant Lions won in dramatic fashion at the regional tournament held in McAlester on Wednesday afternoon.
In game one, Durant beat Memorial in the bottom of the seventh inning with a SAC-RBI from Riley Hendrix for 3-2 win and Durant then held off the home team McAlester in game two for a 5-4 win.
“They are playing with confidence and that’s a good thing,” said head coach Ron Norman. “They have said over the last two weeks that they aren’t done and that’s been their motto. I’m very proud of them.”
Austin Joines took the mound in game one and pitched a complete game against Memorial and in game two Brandon Robison pitched a complete game against McAlester.
“We got a great pitching performance in both games. Those guys threw their heart out,” said Norman. “All I can ask from them is to give me their best and they did.”
Timely hits and defense was the theme for the Lions.
Defense put the Lions in place to win game one against Memorial. Durant’s catcher Carson Campbell made two huge plays at the plate to stop Memorial from scoring. In both plays there was a huge collision at the plate, but Campbell held on to the ball for the outs.
Shortstop Copper Webb and second baseman Tyler Stovall worked the infield with double plays.
In the bottom of the seventh inning, the game was tied at 2-2. Denton Comer started the inning with a double, Campbell singled to right and Webb drew a walk. Then Hendrix stepped up for his team with the bases loaded and hit a deep SAC-FLY fly ball for the winning RBI.
Durant had to hold off McAlester in game two to get the win.
The Lions drew first blood in the top of the second inning. Denton Comer, Cooper Webb and Carson Campbell all hit RBI singles to grab a 3-0 lead. But McAlester got a run in the bottom half of the inning and Durant led, 3-1.
Then in the bottom of fourth inning, McAlester tied the at 3-3 with a 2 RBI single with the bases loaded.
More timely hitting came in the top of fifth inning for Durant as they scored two runs. With two baserunners, Alex Brooks brooks hit a deep SAC-FLY for a RBI, but another run scored on a bad throw to home plate. Durant led 5-3.
McAlester tried to rally in the bottom of the seventh and scored an RBI infield single. Then McAlester loaded the bases with two outs, but Durant’s defense held strong and came away with a 5-4 victory.
The Lions play today in McAlester at 6:30 p.m.
Reach Randy Bruce at 580-924-4388 or on Twitter @SportsBruce.