COVINGTON - The Conyers Post 77 baseball team had a quick exit from the POW-MIA Tournament after splitting two games Saturday in Douglasville.
Post 77 eliminated the team from Shelbyville, Tenn., with a 9-8 win before being trounced in five innings 12-0 by Post 12 of Dothan, Ala.
"The team from Dothan is a good looking ball club, they're tough," Conyers Post 77 manager Eddie Bagwell said.
Conyers fell way back in the first game against Post 23 as they trailed 8-4 as Post 77 headed to the bottom of the sixth inning.
Chunk Smith got the team headed in the right direction with a solo home run to make it an 8-5 game.
After base hits by Ryan Jubran and Hunter Styles, Kelvan Diaz' two-bagger allowed Jubran to cross the plate and close the gap a bit more.
Conyers loaded the bases when Nick Woodward got a free trip to first.
With bases loaded and one out, Nick Mateen brought in a run on a fielder's choice but at the expense of the second out.
Mateen stole second to put runners in scoring position.
An infield hit by Travis Tarlton allowed Diaz to tie the game before Mateen motored in from second base to give Post 77 the lead.
"The guy at first wasn't paying attention and that allowed Nick to score," Bagwell said.
Chase Ware took over for Patrick Jansen on the mound giving Conyers the win.
Bagwell was hoping that the come-from-behind win in dramatic fashion would give his team the boost it needed to get past Dothan. Unfortunately, Post 12's pitching kept Conyers off balance while Dothan's bats knocked them into submission early.
Dothan scored three runs in the first inning before adding four more in the second and two in the third.
Following a scoreless fourth inning, Post 12 scored enough runs in the top of the fifth to mercy rule Conyers.
In previous games, Dothan and Conyers are tied with two wins each.
"We've had experience with them before," Bagwell said. "Their pitching is very good; they're just fundamentally sound.
"We just made too many mistakes. We've got to find a way to eliminate them."
Manny Fils can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.