BUHLER — The Great Bend Chiefs Class AAA American Legion baseball team split their season-opening doubleheader on Tuesday night at Buhler.
The Chiefs fell 11-1 in the first game, but rallied to win 10-8 in the nightcap.
Buhler led 5-0 as the first inning closed in Game 1.
The Chiefs got one run back in the second, but couldn't keep up.
"The best way to put it, we didn't play bad defensively," Chiefs head coach Michael Stettinger said. "We didn't hit the ball well, and we couldn't throw strikes."
Great Bend managed three hits in the game, one from Jared Maneth, Tyler Nuss and Jack Westhoff.
Brady Michel scored Great Bend's lone run after drawing a walk.
Great Bend's second game went better for the Chiefs.
This time, it was Great Bend that went up 5-0 in the first inning. Buhler scored six runs in the bottom of the inning.
Buhler added another run in the bottom of the second.
The Chiefs tied things up at seven runs apiece in the top of the third, and scored a run in each of the fourth, fifth and sixth innings.
Buhler only managed one more run after the second inning, leaving it behind.
"In the second game, we were more aggressive at the plate," Stettinger said. "Buhler came back in the inning, but we kept at it. We kept adding runs."
Michel was 2-for-2 with three RBIs, two walks and two runs scored.
Dillon Reiser went 3-for-5 with a double and triple and two RBIs.
Jaxx Hillman, Matt Zecha and Westhoff each had one RBI in the game.
Great Bend opens its portion of the Tournament of Champions in Manhattan against the host team today at 3:30 p.m.
Great Bend challenges St. Joseph at 12:15 p.m. and Hays at 4:45 on Friday.
On Saturday, Great Bend faces the Salina Falcons at 2:30 p.m.
The top 4 teams compete on Sunday.
— Kevin Price