After two days of play at the Austin/Grayson Invitational, the American National Bank Ardmore Cardinals are 2-1 entering the tournament's final day.
Ardmore lost the opener 4-2 to the Dallas Patriots on Friday, but rebounded with back-to-back wins on Saturday against the Fort Worth D-Bat 9-8 and the Dallas Dodgers 10-7. Against the D-Bats, Ardmore scored two runs in the fifth inning, including a walk-off base on balls to end the game due to time limit.
With the bases loaded, Jake Patterson (Kingston) drew a walk to score Donovan Kuykendall (Ardmore) from third for the 9-8 advantage. The Cardinals were behind 8-7 going into the fifth inning, but rallied back with another RBI walk by Cade Clay (Rattan) to tie the game.
Ardmore strung together nine hits. Hunter Stephens (Murray State/Silo) doubled and Andrew Bolin (Silo) had two hits and two runs scored for the Cardinals. Alec Hetherington (Davis) and Gage Goff Rose State/Madill) also had two hits each.
Scott Brinkley (Tushka) picked up the win in the fifth. Ardmore made due despite a shaky fielding performance.
"We won because we outhit people today," Ardmore Cardinals coach Bubba Tamez said. "We weren't good in the field. It's made for some sloppy games because of rainouts."
In the final game on Saturday, the Cardinals trailed the Dodgers 7-5 in the bottom of sixth before exploding for five runs in the inning. The game ended via time limit.
Cade Carter (Colbert) hit a bases-clearing three-run double, and with two men on, Stephens added a two-run double for his third hit of the game.
Bolin doubled, Chase Crites (Murray State/Caney) had an RBI single and Brinkley added two hits for the Cardinals. Hetherington started for the Cardinals, but exited due to arm soreness in the first inning. Kuykendall picked up the win, scattering six hits over six innings.
Goff reached base five times for the Cardinals on Saturday, scoring three runs and drawing high praise from Tamez.
"Any time we had offensive productivity, he was involved today," Tamez said of Goff. "He was really good at the plate. He's really been a sparkplug for us offensively."
Against the Dallas Patriots on Friday, Patterson got the start, giving up six hits. Patterson struck out five and walked four in the loss.
Dallas scored all of its runs in the second and third innings.
Crites drove in the only runs for the Cardinals on a two-run home run in the fourth inning — his third homer in three games. But in the same inning, the Cardinals stranded two runners in scoring position. The Cardinals also left the bases loaded in the seventh.
Bolin added a double in the sixth inning for the Cardinals.
Even in the loss Friday, Tamez thought the Cardinals were a part of a well-played game, arguably their best of the weekend. The Cardinals have won four of their last five games.
"It was probably the best baseball game I've been a part of this summer," Tamez said. "Patterson after the third inning ... after that he cruised. He was really, really good in the last four innings."
The Cardinals (6-8) play Allen (Texas) today at 1 p.m. and United Baseball (Dallas) at 3:30 p.m. at Veterans Field in Sherman to wrap up the tournament.