Just when upstart Davenport appeared primed for an upset of second-ranked Roff in their winner’s bracket showdown Thursday at the Class A Regional Tournament, the host Tigers used an old weapon — the long ball — to regain the inside track to their 15th straight state tournament berth.
Davenport wiped out a 1-0 deficit with a five-run outburst in the top of the third inning before Roff (24-7) hit three home runs in a game-tying four-run rally in the bottom of the inning and scored nine unanswered runs en route to a 10-5 victory. The win left the Tigers — the defending Class B state champions — needing just one victory today to claim their eight straight spring regional title.
“Davenport has a pretty solid club,” Roff coach Ead Simon said. “We got behind and battled back. I like the way we responded when we got down.”
Elsewhere in regional playoff action Thursday, Tupelo (No. 2 in Class B) scored a pair of run-rule victories Thursday — 12-0 over Victory Life and 11-1 over Stuart — to improve to 27-8 on the season and, like Roff, move to with one win of a 15th straight state tournament appearance.
Class 2A through 4A opened district play Thursday, and Byng (No. 18 in 4A) easily advanced with a pair of easy victories over Pauls Valley at home. The Pirates beat the Panthers, 8-1, in the opener, then posted a 13-1 run-rule victory in Game 2 to claim their district title.
Elsewhere, Latta claimed the title at its 2A district at home, run-ruling Konawa, 10-0 and 13-1, in a pair of four-inning games.
CLASS A REGIONAL
Roff 10, Davenport 5
A solo home run by winning pitcher Mark Bryant ignited Roff’s third-inning comeback, and after a single by Remington Pope, Brendon Barr and Tim Wallen went back-to-back to tie the game.
Barr added a solo shot — his fourth home run of the day — in the sixth inning for the game’s final run. Bryant was 3-for-4, and Wallen and Eddie Lomas added two hits apiece for the Tigers.
Roff 14, Bowlegs 3
Barr hit a two-run homer in the first and another in the second as Roff raced to a 7-0 lead. Wallen also hit a pair of home runs — a solo shot in the second and a grand slam in the sixth to plate the Tigers’ final four runs — and finished 3-for-4 with four runs scored. Pope was 3-fof-5 and scored twice, and Cody Peak had two hits and an RBI in the win.
CLASS B REGIONAL
Tupelo 12, Victory Life 0
Brandon Maggia and H. D. Bullard combined on a one-hitter, and Trey Roberson doubled twice and drove in four runs to lead Tupelo to the run-rule victory.
Kade Curry also doubled and drove in three runs for the Tigers, who had just three hits but walked nine times in five innings.
Tupelo 11, Stuart 1
Matt Benedict allowed three hits and struck out 10 over five innings, and Maggia homered as Tupelo run-ruled Stuart.
Jake Sanders had two hits, including a double, and drove in two runs, and Maggia added a double to his solo home run in the fifth to pace an eight-hit Tupelo attack. TheTigers led just 3-1 before erupting for eight runs in the bottom of the fifth.
“Our pitching was really solid, and defensively we played 10 innings without committing an error,” Tupelo coach Clay Weller said after seeing his club improve to 27-8. “In the fifth inning against Stuart, we finally started putting some hits together, and that was good to see.”
CLASS 4A DISTRICT
Byng 8, Pauls Valley 1
Brandon Fortner tossed a one-hitter and struck out eight, and he also had two hits — including a double — and drove in two runs to lead the Pirates to the win.
Jake Scroggins was 3-for-4 with a double and an RBI, and Ryan Williams and Jake Wellington added two hits and an RBI apiece for Byng.
Byng 13, Pauls Valley 1
Clint Humphers allowed four hits over five innings, and Byng scored in every at-bat en route to the run-rule victory. Scroggins finished 3-for-4 with three RBIs, Wellington had two hits and drove in two runs, and Fortner, Williams and Justin Frazier added two hits apiece as part of a 14-hit Pirate attack.
“We hit the ball and didn’t kick it around,” Byng coach Shawn Streater said. “We did what we had to do to advance.”
CLASS 2A DISTRICT
Latta 10, Konawa 0
Brett Jennings allowed two hits to earn his third win in four decisions, and Reed Johnson hit a three-run homer to highlight a five-run second-inning rally for Latta (No. 3 in 2A).
Jake Collins added two hits and three RBIs, and Colton Engel doubled to highlight the Panthers’ two-run rally in the first inning.
Latta 13, Konawa 1
Freshman Brady Johnson pitched a three-hitter, and Deryk Ronk had two hits, three runs scored and two RBIs for Latta.
Dylan Dinkler scored three times and Jake Collins added two RBIs for the Panthers, who erupted for six runs in the first inning and six more in the third.