Cranbrook Bandits ‘A’ team pitcher Parker Thomson attempts to make a play at home plate against the visiting Glacier Twins on Monday, July 10, 2017. (Brad McLeod Photo)

Cranbrook Bandits ‘A’ team lose four straight doubleheaders

Baseball squad defeated eight times in four days, only one weekend remaining in regular season

It was a rough weekend for the Cranbrook Bandits ‘A’ team as they played four straight doubleheaders and lost every single game.

After finishing the Polson, Montana ‘Firecracker Tournament’ with a pair of wins, the Bandits weren’t able to generate any momentum into their regular season American Legion Montana League play.

The Bandits opened up their marathon weekend in Libby with a doubleheader against the Loggers on Friday afternoon.

In the first game, Cranbrook quickly dug a hole for themselves giving up a 13-0 lead after three innings. Although Brandon Thorn’s double powered a strong six-run fifth inning to avoid a mercy-defeat, Libby held on for a 15-11 victory.

In the sequel, the Bandits got up to a quick 2-0 lead but were immediately matched by the Loggers in the bottom of the first.

After an extended stalemate, Libby capitalized on a Bandits defensive error and earned two runs in the fifth inning, hanging on to win the game 4-2.

On Saturday, in Hamilton, the Bitterroot Red Sox took care of the Bandits handily. After starting the scoring with five runs in the second inning, the top team in the conference ended up earning a 7-3 victory.

In the next game, the Red Sox piled up a 10-0 lead after two innings and earned an 11-0 mercy-victory after five innings.

The Bandits then played the Bitterroot Bucs on Sunday afternoon, earning another mercy-exit after an 11-1 loss.

Cranbrook recovered in their next game, however, driving in four runs in the first inning before letting the game slip away.

While they almost put in a comeback with four runs in the seventh inning, the Bucs earned a 10-8 win to keep Cranbrook winless in the six-game road trip.

Coming home to Confederation Park on Monday, the Bandits knew they would be hard pressed to beat the Glacier Twins.

The Twins had a 14-2 conference play record heading into the series, good enough for second place, and had already handed Cranbrook two losses earlier in the year.

Although the Bandits managed to survive early in the first game with a 3-3 tie after three innings, the Twins took over from that point and forced a five-inning 19-6 mercy victory.

In the second game, the Bandits had an even more impressive start and had a 7-0 lead at the top of the third. Glacier rallied hard, however, and it was 10-7 going into the fourth and ended up being a 26-11 blowout.

The Bandits ‘A’ team now only have a single doubleheader remaining before the postseason begins. The Libby Loggers (10-8) will visit Confederation Park on Saturday for a pair of games and then the year will wrap up at the district tournament in Whitefish, Montana from July 19 to 23.

The Bandits have a 3-17 record in the Class A West District and are in the eighth and final postseason position. The Kootenai Valley Rangers disbanded mid-season, meaning all eight teams will compete at the district tournament this season. Overall, Cranbrook has a 12-27-1 record this year.

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