Beverly/Lowell bests Post 64 in tourney opener
CAMBRIDGE, Ohio — All Kam Hesson does is throw strikes and get people out.
The right-hander from Caldwell continued his winning ways on the hill as Beverly/Lowell Post 389/750 downed Marietta Post 64, 12-5, in American Legion District 11 Tournament baseball action at Don Coss Field Friday night.
Hesson improved his mound mark to 9-0 on the summer.
“I don’t know what to say about that kid,” said BevLow skipper Todd Engle. “He’s throwing with so much confidence. I’m blessed. He’s come from a great program at Caldwell, so he’s been taught really well at a young age.”
In 6.2 innings of work, Hesson threw 73 pitches, fanned one, walked none, allowed five hits and three runs. Righty Eric Isner recorded the final out.
Hesson had a solid defense behind him, and plenty of run support. Post 389/750 (28-7) finished with 14 hits, and had six batters in the order with two or more hits.
Logan Isner led the way with three knocks, including a triple and a double, and three runs batted in. Drew Huffman, Clayton Cook, Konnor Roberts, Nate Brothers, and Luke Nelson each had two hits. Tate Engle scored twice and Tyler Bradford drove in two runs.
“We’ve been off for a week, and I was a little bit worried coming into this game from an offensive standpoint,” Todd Engle said. “But the kids had that look in their eyes.”
After going scoreless in the first four innings, Marietta (16-10) closed out the contest with five runs in the last three. Kail Hill had two RBIs, while Derek Duckworth, Corbin Alkire, and Toby Minder had one apiece. Brady Vincent also added a double.
Post 64 finished with five errors.
“We talked before the game that we needed to make the routine play,” said Marietta assistant coach Deron Alkire. “And that hurt us today. We added a few innings to the game on outs we had to get. But it’s a young ballclub. We’ll bounce back.”
Isner’s two-run triple and Cook’s RBI single staked BevLow to a 3-0 first-inning advantage. Post 389/750 added three more runs in the third, highlighted by Huffman’s leadoff triple and then later Roberts’ two-run homer to left.
“Konnor told me today that he was excited when we were taking BP (batting practice),” Engle said. “So, I thought he would have a big game.
“He’s hit some balls in some really big parks this year that would’ve been out at our place (at Fort Frye High). We’ve teased him about it.”
In the fifth, Beverly/Lowell stretched its lead to 8-0, scoring one run on an error and another on Brothers’ RBI hit.
Marietta got on the scoreboard in the bottom half of the frame on back-to-back doubles by Vincent and Minder. Minder later legged it home on Duckworth’s sac fly to left to make it 8-2.
Post 389/750 tacked on a single run in the sixth on Cook’s RBI single and three more in the seventh for a 12-2 advantage. During that late surge, Isner doubled home a run.
Post 64 went down swinging in its final at-bats with Hill singling home two runs and Corbin Alkire plating another with a double.
Beverly/Lowell is scheduled to play St. Clairsville Post 159 in a winners bracker game at 3 p.m. Saturday while Marietta will be pitted against Barnesville Post 168 in an elimination game at 6 p.m. Saturday.
“It doesn’t get any easier,” Engle said. “St. Clairsville’s swinging it really, really well. That’s another team that’s extremely well-coached.”