A loss would have eliminated the Chiefs (12-7, 7-7) from playoff contention, but they did just enough — or rather, the Yellow Jackets (10-11, 8-6) did too little, too late.
Trailing 12-8 heading to the sixth, Sprayberry scored on two runs to get close. Spencer Beyers singled with two outs, moved to second on a wild pitch, and scored on Clint Coleman’s homer to left-center.
Sprayberry loaded the bases again, but Brian Exley entered the game for the Chiefs and shut the Yellow Jackets down.
In the top of the seventh, Chavis connected for a long homer over the 352-foot sign in left-center, but Exley worked out of the inning without allowing another runner on base to close the game.
Sprayberry coach Phillip Henderson said his team just didn’t get the offense going soon enough.
“We didn’t come to the party until about the fourth inning,” he said. “We scrapped a little bit after that. Did some good things, but we walked to many hitters and made too many errors. They took advantage of it and won the ballgame.”
Down 2-0 heading to the third, Sprayberry finally got on the scoreboard.
Tristan Roberts, who had a rough night from the start and walked the second batter he faced, walked Beyers. Tucker Breen entered to run for Beyers before Colman singled through the right side of the infield. One out later, Nick Hartney to load the bases.
Lee Allen followed with a single to drive in Breen before Bobby Gauvreau, Alex Endres and Chavis drew walks to force in three more runs to give Sprayberry a 5-2 lead.
In the bottom of the inning, the Chiefs retook the lead with five runs.
A single by Grant Pfost, a hit batsman, and a single by Russ McGlamry got it going. Roberts’ infield single loaded the bases before Jacob Weems drew a walk to score a run. Two more runs scored on an error, and Chandler Smith doubled to drive in Weems.
Sequoyah led 7-4 after two innings.
Sprayberry trailed 9-4 heading to the fifth, but the Yellow Jackets were quick to change that.
Nick Hartney doubled to right to drive in two. Hartney was on third when Gauvreau reached first on a ball lost in the sun, and later scored on a hit by Endres, who was caught trying to advance to second and ended the inning.
With their lead down to one 9-8, the Chiefs scored three in the sixth to push the lead to four.