SEYMOUR – Seymour avenged an earlier loss to Bedford North Lawrence with a 7-6 victory in the first round of the Hoosier Hills Conference baseball tournament on Monday.
The Owls, who suffered an 8-7 setback to the Stars on April 17, improved to 15-4 and advanced to face New Albany in the tournament semifinal on Wednesday.
BNL (14-6) certainly had chances. The Stars banged out 12 hits but stranded 13 runners, and their late rally in the top of the seventh came up a run short.
“We had some opportunities,” BNL coach Jeff Callahan. “They made some nice plays to end threats, and we didn’t get big hits when we needed them.
“Both teams have a lot of good players, guys that compete. We’re built a lot alike. If we played them 10 times, it wouldn’t surprised me if it went five and five. They got us tonight in a big game, but the season isn’t over.”
BNL scored first in the first on Ryker Hughes’ two-out RBI double. Seymour answered in the bottom of that frame as Vince Wilson was hit by a pitch, went to second on a wild pitch and scored on Charlie Longmeier’s RBI single.
The Stars went up in the third when Walker Ward drew a bases-loaded walk, but Seymour again retaliated immediately on a walk, a hit batter and a sacrifice fly. BNL went up 4-2 in the fourth on a Cal Gates single and Kaedyn Bennett’s misplayed ground ball, but the Stars left the bases loaded. Seymour came right back with in the bottom of the inning on a two-run single by Bret Perry.
Seymour went in front on Longmeier’s two-run homer in the fifth, and Longmeier drew a bases-loaded walk for a critical run in the sixth.
BNL battled back with two runs in the seventh on RBI singles by Bennett and Hughes before Seymour reliever Gavin Leary got the final out.
Hughes was 3-for-5 with two RBIs while Gates, Bennett, Kline Woodward and Nate Pemberton had two hits each. Longmeier had two hits and 4 RBIs for the Owls.
The Stars will visit either Jeffersonville or Jennings County on Thursday, then wrap up the HHC by hosting Columbus East on Friday.