KINGSPORT, Tenn. - The road to the 2010 Appalachian Athletic Conference Tournament title just got tougher for second-seed Union as No. 7 seed Bryan (Tenn.) pulled off a 5-3 upset Saturday in the opening round.
The loss drops the Bulldogs (36-15 overall) the losers' bracket, and they will play UVa-Wise at 11 a.m. Monday. Bryan (21-33 overall) will play Bluefield (Va.) Monday at 7:30 p.m. Bluefield defeated UVa-Wise 17-2.
The Lion pitching staff handcuff the Bulldogs for much of the game. Union was held without a hit until the third inning and didn't get its second hit until the seventh.
Zack Breault picked up the win for Bryan, allowing two earned runs on four hits and three walks with seven strikeouts. Josh Smith collected the save, tossing the final two innings and giving up one run on two hits and three walks.
Brandon Hedrick (Corbin, Ky.) struck out a career-high 13 batters but suffered his first loss in his career, dropping him to 10-1 on the season. He gave up four earned runs on seven hits and three walks.
Bryan cracked the scoring column in the third, taking a 2-0 lead. Josh King belted a one-out, solo home run to put the Lions on the board, and Kevin Layne later added a RBI single to left field to make it a two-run contest.
In the sixth, Jonathan Brown and Steven Brown proved back-to-back run-scoring singles to push Bryan's lead to 4-0.
Brian Mouton (Oakland, Calif.) led off the seventh with a solo home run, his fourth of the season. Hedrick followed with a double, and pinch-runner Ben Hartley (Lexington, Ky.) later scored on a Josh Longbrake (St. Cloud, Fla.) single.
Hedrick provided a run-single single in the eighth to cut the margin to 4-3. However, the Bulldogs missed a golden opportunity to score more as they left the bases loaded.
The Lions added an insurance run in the top of the ninth for a 5-3 cushion.
Union got the first to batters on base in the bottom of the ninth thanks to back-to-back walks. However, Jonathan Riddle's (Eighty Eight, Ky.) sac bunt attempt was turned into a double play. Demetrius Davis (Marietta, Ga.) then grounded out to short to end the game.
Hedrick finished the game 2-for-4 with a RBI, while Ryan Satterlee (Youngstown, Ohio) was also 2-for-4 with a run scored.
For Bryan, King went 2-for-3 with a RBI and two runs scored with Layne going 3-for-5 with a RBI.
Defensively, the Lions turned three double plays to squelch several would-be Bulldog rallies.
This marked the first time Union has lost to Bryan since 2005.