for Tribune-Courier Sports
DRAFFENVILLE – The host team had a rough time of it in its own American Legion Junior Baseball Tournament over the weekend, losing all four games including a 10-9 heartbreaker on Sunday afternoon at Mike Miller Park.
The Titans of William A. Doyle Post 236 of Calvert City came up one run short in a rally to regain the lead against the Flash of Franklin, Tennessee in the tourney finale.
Grundy (Tennessee) Post 74 won the tournament with a 4-0 record. Mount Juliet (Tennessee) Post 281 took second place in a tie-breaker with Orient (Illinois) Post 1961. Both teams compiled 3-1 records.
Newburgh (Indiana) Post 44 and Franklin were 2-2, while local teams Calvert City and Paducah Post 31 were winless.
“We battled hard but fell short.” Calvert City coach Josh Inglish said after Sunday’s game.
The Titans took a 6-4 lead into the fourth inning, but Franklin scored six times to take a 10-6 lead into the fifth. The Marshall County squad rallied to score three runs, but Franklin got the final out when Lance Dyke, who drove in two runs with a sharp hit to right center, was caught in a rundown between first and second.
“We have struggled offensively the past three games,” Inglish said, “I’m proud of the way the guys hit the ball today. Unfortunately, one bad inning killed us.”
Post 236 took a 6-2 lead with an offensive burst in the third inning powered by a three-run triple by first baseman Brandon Blossum.
Trace Colson came in to pitch in relief for Titans starter Nathan Hopwood to start the fifth inning. Franklin scored six runs in the top half of the fifth to regain the lead.
Blossum led off the bottom of the fifth with a line-drive single down the left field line. After three consecutive walks by the Franklin pitcher, which brought Blossum in to score, Dyke laced his hit, cutting the lead to one run.
Blossum led the team with his triple and a double. Hopwood pitched four innings, allowing only two runs with one strikeout.
The Titans play a double-header today at 4:30 against Henry County in Paris, Tennessee, and visit Newburgh, Indiana, for a twin bill against the Post 44 squad on Saturday. The first game starts at 1 p.m.