Bangs in a hole after 7-6 loss to Cisco in bi-district series opener

Derrick Stuckly Brownwood Bulletin
Bangs first baseman Cheyenne Edwards (right) turns and fires toward the bag to retire Cisco’s Clare Ramos (2) following a bunt in the Lady Dragons’ 7-6 loss Thursday.

BANGS — Errors, which plagued Bangs in its seeding playoff game against Comanche on Monday, again haunted the Lady Dragons in their Region I-3A bi-district series opener Thursday night.

An uncharacteristic five miscues were magnified by 10 hits as the Cisco Lady Loboes stunned Bangs, 7-6, in Game 1. Game 2 is slated for 7:30 p.m. today in Cisco, with Game 3, if needed, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in Hawley.

Down two runs early, the Lady Dragons grabbed a 5-2 advantage in the fourth inning, but were unable to hold on to the lead.

Leading 5-3 heading to the top of the sixth inning, Bangs yielded four runs in the frame.

Cisco’s Diana Patterson led off with a slow roller in front of Lady Dragon pitcher Erin Anderson, then beat the throw to first. Camille Webb followed with a single up the middle, then Kentleigh Nichols’ RBI single to right-center field trimmed Bangs’ lead to 5-4.

Bangs appeared as though it might escape the inning with the lead, but a two-out error allowed Jali Green to reach base, and Nichols and Tonya Thompson — who reached on a fielder’s choice in which Webb was retired at the plate — scored the tying and go-ahead runs.

Trailing 6-5, the Lady Dragons witnessed consecutive two-out hits by Lillie Harper and Marisa Pence, with the second single adding a much-needed insurance runs for Cisco.

Bangs attempted to rally in the bottom of the seventh as Courtney Owen doubled to right-center field with one out. Owen then scored on a two-out RBI infield single by Taylor Malett. But Malett was left stranded at first when the game ended.

Cisco grabbed a 2-0 lead in the first inning as Thompson led off with an infield single and scored on Harper’s one-out, two-run homer to center field.

Bangs closed the gap to 2-1 in the top of the second as Malett singled to start the frame, then scored on an RBI fielder’s choice by Kenedi Deal.

In the bottom of the fourth inning, the Lady Dragons used a hit batter and four singles to shallow center field to seize a 5-2 advantage.

Haley Pitts was plunked to start the frame then Deal singled up the middle. With one out, Vanessa Perez singled to load the bases, while Raelee Francois singled to plate Pitts with the tying run. Owen followed with a base hit up the middle, which was misplayed in the outfield, allowing Deal, Perez and Francois to race home.

The winner of the series will face either Merkel or Sonora in the area round.