On Sunday, May 14, the Grant County Braves played the Walton Verona in the first round of the 32nd District Tournament. Unfortunately for Grant, they were unable to overcome the Bearcats taking an 8-0 loss after seven innings.

The Braves started the game on offense but struggled to advance against the Bearcat’s strong defense. Despite making good contact, the Braves hit three ground outs preventing any momentum by the Braves.

Luke Durnell was the only batter to gain a base with a single to center field. Meanwhile, in the bottom of the inning, Grant was also able to prevent a run with Bradley Wooten catching a fly ball and Braiden Beach striking out two batters.

Heading into the second inning Grant didn’t earn a base with a strikeout and two forceouts sending Walton Verona to bat. In the bottom of the second, the Bearcats cracked the Brave’s defense to take a strong lead.

Following two walks and a strikeout Grant gave up their first runs as a double brought home two. After this Walton broke away with three additional doubles scoring the Bearcats their fifth run. Although a catch by Joe Arnold closed the inning with Grant’s third out, the damage had already been done.

Once again the Braves only earned a single base with Tucker Ammerman being walked in the top of third inning. Initially, the Brave’s defense was able to hold off the Bearcats in the bottom of the inning with a groundout by Connor Saylor along with a strikeout.

This didn’t last as two singles put Walton ahead 6-0 before another strikeout closed the inning. Still unable to breach Walton’s defense the Braves quickly had three outs in the top of the fourth inning. Similarly, a diving catch by Wooten in combination with catches from Ammerman and Seth Tucker cut the Bearcats short.

Through the fifth and sixth innings, Grant was only able to gain a single base with Seth singling up the first base line. In contrast, Walton Verona extended their lead with a run in both innings. Unable to close the distance created by the Bearcat’s offense in the seventh the game drew to a close as the Braves lost the first round of districts.

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