Brownwood to face Blooming Grove at 6 p.m. Wednesday after ousting McGregor

The Brownwood Angels have alternated wins and losses over their first three games at the TTAB District 12U Open Base State Tournament, and remain alive after a late night elimination bracket victory Tuesday at the Massey Sports Complex.

The Angels opened with a 3-1 victory over the Early Huskers Monday, were dealt a 12-9 loss by the Cameron Rangers, who enjoyed a first round bye, and bounced back and ousted the McGregor Raiders, 19-9.

Next up for the Angels is a 6 p.m. Wednesday battle against the Blooming Grove Blue in another do-or-die contest.

Angels 19, McGregor Raiders 9

(Tuesday)

Following a loss to Cameron to start the day Tuesday, the Angels wasted little time putting that loss behind them. An eight-run bottom of the first allowed Brownwood to open a six-run cushion, and the Angels never looked back.

After yielding a pair of runs in the top of the first, the Angels’ initial trip to the plate started with singles by Hudson Reagan and Owen Huntsinger, then Ridge Stegemoller knocked in both base runners with a base hit. Slayde Espinoza then doubled home Stegemoller, while Luke Gray tripled home Espinoza before the first out was recorded.

Gray later crossed the plate on a wild pitch during the at-bat of Tristan Salinas, who along with Zaiden Lopez and Cobe Walker, walked to load the bases with two outs. Salinas and Lopez scored when Hudson reached on a two-out McGregor miscue, and Walker came home on a wild pitch during Huntsinger’s at-bat.

McGregor shaved Brownwood’s lead to 8-4 in the top of the third on a bases-loaded walk by Dawson Keller and an RBI single to right field by Kaden Kollaga, scoring Josiah Carrillo and Reagan Ragsdale, respectively.

The Angels tacked on six more runs in the bottom of the third to increase the lead to double digits, 14-4.

Noah Barron reached on a dropped third strike and scored when Reagan reached on an error. Another McGregor miscue in the inning during Espinoza’s at-bat resulted in Reagan and Huntsinger, who reached on a fielder’s choice, crossing the plate. Stegemoller walked and scored on a wild pitch during Gray’s at-bat. Gray then pushed the lead to double figures by rifling a two-run home run over the right field fence that also scored Espinoza.

McGregor cut Brownwood’s lead in half in the top of the fourth inning, as the Angels’ advantage dwindled to 14-9.

But Brownwood fired back with a five-spot in the bottom of the fourth to end the contest.

Reagan doubled home Isaiah Moreno, then Huntsinger followed with a two-RBI double that scored Hayden Deen, who singled, and Reagan. Stegemoller’s RBI double was next, which plated Huntsinger, and Espinoza ended the game with an RBI double that brought home Stegemoller.

Angels 3, Huskers 1

(Monday)

In Monday’s tournament opener, the Angels scored twice in the top of the sixth and final inning to edge the Early Huskers, 3-1.

Knotted at 1 heading into each team’s final at-bat, the Angels started the sixth with a walk by Stegemoller, who then stole second base. Espinoza followed with an RBI single into right field off Early pitcher Caleb McCullough, which plated Stegemoller with the decisive run. Espinoza was erased at second base when Gray reached on a fielder’s choice, but Tristan Salinas was hit by a pitch with two outs to move Gray into scoring position. Lopez then came through with an insurance RBI single into left field that produced the third run before Lopez was thrown out at second base attempting to stretch his hit into a double.

The Huskers had a chance to rally in the bottom of the sixth as Ki Houston led off with a walk issued by Brownwood’s Espinoza, while Ethan Pallette followed with a single up the middle. With runners on second and third and two outs, Justin Pierce — who doubled off the center field fence earlier in the contest — was inches away from a game-tying single as the Brownwood shortstop Reagan made a back-handed stop of a grounder up the middle and completed the throw to first base for the final out.

Tied at 1 in the fourth inning, Early let a golden opportunity to seize control of the contest slip away. Houston started the fourth with a double down the third base line, while an errant throw on the play allowed him to advance to third base. The next batter, Pallette, grounded back to Salinas on the mound, who retired Houston at the plate on a fielder’s choice. Connor King then reached on an infield single, putting runners on first and second with one out. But Hayden Schroeder lined into a double play as Pallette was forced out at second base.

The Huskers took the lead in the bottom of the third as Jeremy Brown drew a two-out walk and advanced to third base when Caydon Laird reached on an error. Brown later came home to score on a passed ball during McCullough’s at-bat.

The Angels immediately answered the Huskers’ run after Brownwood left runners stranded in scoring position in each of the first three innings. In the top of the fourth, Espinoza drew a lead walk and advanced to second base on a wild pitch. Following a pair of strikeouts, Salinas’ RBI single to right field drove home Espinoza with the tying run.