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Pioneers, Blazers battle in first round of tournament

By CHRIS SHIELDS
Sports Writer
Daniel Boone and David Crockett opened play in the conference tournament’s first round at Cardinal Park in Johnson City over the weekend.
The Blazers opened the postseason as a four-seed following a 17-14 overall record and a 7-5 conference mark against five-seed Tennessee High on May 2.
The Blazers pushed four runs across in the bottom of the first inning, with ace Brandon Davis on the mound. The early lead would be enough for the Boone win.
Davis took it from there, pitching a complete game and allowing just one Tennessee High runner to cross the plate. Boone would hold on for the 4-1 win to advance to the double-elimination round of the tournament.
Crockett joined in on the first-round action as a three-seed following a strong regular season campaign where they played to a 17-10 overall record and 9-3 mark in the conference.
They opened tournament play on May 2 against six-seed Sullivan Central.
The Pioneers battered their opponents in a 12-2 win, but the contest did not begin as it would end.
Crockett actually found themselves trailing 2-0 after the first inning, but added 11 runs over the next two innings, five in the second and six in the third. They would add another run an inning later for the big win.
Isaac Barkley plated two runs in the contest.
The first round wins advanced Crockett and Boone to the double-elimination portion of the bracket.
On May 3, Science Hill narrowly escaped with a 2-1 win over Boone while Crockett was pounded by Dobyns-Bennett, 17-2.
The losses set the Pioneers and Blazers up in an elimination contest against one another on May 4.
Boone sent Gabe Sanders to the mound against the Pioneers and the pitcher answered.
Sanders would pitch into the fifth inning, keeping the Pioneers off the scoreboard.
The Blazer offense scored two runs in the first inning. They would add five more over the course of the game, but it wouldn’t matter as the Crockett bats remained silent.
The 7-0 win eliminated the Pioneers from the postseason and ended what was overall an impressive season.
Boone will now play two-seed Dobyns-Bennett in an elimination contest for both teams after the Indians fell to Science Hill, 4-3 on May 4.