Shorthanded Braves win once in Bartlesville

Zach Shelton of Strother was one of four Ada Braves who made the trip to the 60th annual Glen Winget Memorial Baseball Tournament in Bartlesville last weekend.

BARTLESVILLE — The Ada Braves were a shell of themselves last weekend at the 60th annual Glen Winget Memorial Baseball Tournament in Bartlesville, but they still managed to finish 1-2 at the event.

Ada whipped the host Bartlesville Doenges Ford Indians 11-2 in their opener but later dropped an 8-4 decision to the Hillcrest Merchants out of Missouri and were shut out by the Shawnee Phillies 10-0.

The Braves — along with the two other Oklahoma teams in the field — were forced to play games at the Oklahoma Wesleyan University practice field instead of the historic Bill Doenges Memorial Stadium, due to an OSSAA ruling that it violated the organization’s dead week mandate.

“We had to play on that other field, and they hadn’t been using it. The college just uses it as a practice field. They called it a practice field, but I wouldn’t even call it that,” said Ada Braves head coach and general manager Darrell Monroe.”But they did the best they could with what was dropped on them on the last minute by the OSSAA.”

The only Ada Braves who made the trip were Ryan Makerney of Rattan, Jarrett Ellis of Stonewall, Rece Bankston of Rattan and Zach Shelton of Strother. Monroe was forced to scramble and get enough players to be able to compete in the historic event.

“We had to pick up some kids from the Shawnee area ... a kid or two from Beggs. I don’t know if our guys are just played out or what,” Monroe explained. “I’ve never dealt with this before. With last week being the Fourth of July, we just had a lot of kids with other things on their mind.”

The Braves were scheduled to compete in the 31st annual Blue Springs Wood Bat Invitational that begins today in Blue Springs, Missouri, but Moroe pulled the Post 72 club out of that event due to lack of commitments. That tournament includes 25 of the top teams from Missouri, Kansas, Illinois and Nebraska.

“We’re not going to Blue Springs. I only have five kids that confirmed,” he said. “I hate it because the kids could have played some of the top competition in the region.”

The Braves learned early in the season that Aaron Dockery of Allen and Carson Hart of Calvin had pre-existing injuries that forced them out of the Post 72 lineup.

“You can’t lose an Aaron Dockrey and just go find an Aaron Dockery anywhere,” Monroe said. “Losing those guys already hurt us.”

Monroe hopes the Braves, now 4-15, can regroup in time to compete in the Perfect Game 18U Oklahoma Championship Tournament, scheduled for July 17-21 at L. Dale Mitchell Park in Norman.

Jeff Cali has been covering sports in the Ada area since the mid-90s. He graduated from Byng High School and earned a bachelor’s degree from East Central University.