DeShazier stars as Northern reaches semifinals


Jaylon DeShazier did everything he could to preserve Pine Bluff Northern’s victory over White Hall on Sunday.

He struck out nine and kept White Hall scoreless in five innings. He went 2 for 3 at the plate and scored a run. Add to that a highlight-reel catch that led to a key double play, and he had quite the evening in Northern’s 5-3 victory, a game that lasted nearly 3 1/2 hours in the South Arkansas Babe Ruth 15-year-old state tournament at Taylor Field.

The win landed the Brown Chiropractic-sponsored team in Monday night’s winners’ bracket final against cross-town foe Seabrook, a 12-4 winner over Crossett earlier Sunday. The winners’ bracket final will play for the championship Wednesday.

White Hall will take on Lonoke at 5 p.m. Monday and, with a win, would have to win two games Tuesday to advance to the final. Monday’s other game is Crossett and Hamburg at 2:30 p.m.

DeShazier stranded seven runners and allowed only three hits to earn the decision. He moved to left field in the sixth and provided the highlight of the night with a sliding catch in the left-field corner and turned a double play at second base for the second and third outs.

But White Hall didn’t go quietly.

Blake Bradshaw led off the seventh with a double and Jordan Gober followed with a single. Chase Bryan drove in Bradshaw on an error, and White Hall added two more runs on a balk and fielder’s choice before closer Bernard Black struck out the last batter for the final out.

Black worked the final two innings, including a perfect sixth.

Braelin Hence smacked a two-run double to give Northern a 2-0 lead in the first. Tony Freeman drove in the third run on a sacrifice grounder and Brandon Little added two runs with a double in the second to make it 5-0.

Dutton Day took the mound for starter Gavin Bailey and calmed Northern’s bats from there, striking out two and allowing two hits in 3 1/3 innings. Bailey had given up four earned runs on two hits and struck out four in the 1 2/3 to suffer the loss.

Jared Chavis faced only seven batters in the final two innings, but allowed no hits and fanned four.

Jordan Gober went 2 for 3 with a double and run scored to lead White Hall.

Seabrook 12, Crossett 4

Earlier Sunday, Ja’Kobi Jackson batted 3 for 4 — all doubles — Aaron Frazier worked six innings for the win, and Seabrook set up an all-Pine Bluff winners’ bracket final.

Trent Goodman, Joe Moore, Andrew Morgan and Griffen Penny each had two hits. Marshall and Goodman also hit doubles.

Also Sunday: Lonoke defeated England 12-4 and Camden beat Hamburg 15-9.