TOPEKA – There’s magic in the air when Great Bend’s baseball team plays rival Hays. The Legion Chiefs turned the trick with an 8-0 victory over the Hays Eagles to capture Sunday’s Kansas Senators tournament baseball title.
The Chiefs (15-5) play at the Hays AAA Eagles (12-4) Wednesday in a single game. Hays will be the site of the AAA State Legion Tournament July 31-Aug. 4.
CHIEFS 8, HAYS EAGLES 0 – Pitcher Colin Hall shut out Hays on three hits in a 63-pitch outing. Sparkplug Riley Smith drove home three runs. The Chiefs roughed up starter Trey Riggs, the Western Athletic Conference Player of the Year, for eight runs.
“We’ve seen Riggs enough our hitters aren’t intimated,” said Chiefs coach Travis Kurth. “Riggs throws hard, but our guys did a great job hitting his fastball. The guys turned it up a notch and played a complete baseball game. We were pleased by the way we played, especially against Hays.”
Riley Smith doubled home Alex Schremmer in the first inning. Joey Soupiset singled home Schremmer to ignite a four-run third inning. Riley Smith singled home Carson Smith and Soupiset. Riley Smith scored on an error for a 5-0 lead.
Hays’ defense collapsed in the fifth inning as Hall, Riley Smith and Calan Haberman scored on errors for an 8-0 run rule.
CHIEFS 6, ROSSVILLE DAWGS 5 – Carson Smith’s perfect bunt single set the stage for the game-winning three-run rally. Schremmer singled and Townshend Kurth reached on an error and Smith’s bunt loaded the bases.
“I’m confident that Carson can lay down a bunt and it worked out perfect,” Kurth said. “We’ve got batters who put the ball in play.”
Hall’s bases-loaded walk forced home Schremmer. Riley Smith and Calan Haberman followed with RBI singles for the tying and winning runs. It marked the third walkoff victory of the summer.
Hall doubled home Kurth for a 1-0 lead. Rossville’s Jake Zeller scored on a second-inning error for a 1-1 tie. Hall scored on Haberman’s third-inning sacrifice fly. Hall scored on a fifth-inning groundout for a 3-1 lead.
Rossville’s Brody Leitz and Zeller scored on Schremmer’s error for a 3-3 tie. Jay Leathers singled home Parker Kenney and pinch runner Layne Hurla for a 5-3 lead. Reliever Christian Zahnter retired Caen Walker and Brody Jackson on back-to-back groundouts.
Rossville 010 004 – 5 7 3
GB Chiefs 101 103 – 6 9 3
Brown, Lietz (5) and Leathers. Kurth, Soupiset (4), Zahnter (6) and Hall. W—Zahnter. L—Lietz. 2B—GB—Souipset, Hall, Kurth.
GB Chiefs 104 03 – 8 7 1
Hays Eagles 000 00 – 0 3 5
Hall and Carson Smith. Riggs, Hutchison (5) and Lummus. W—Hall. L—Riggs. 2B—GB—Carson Smith; H—Hutchison.
GREAT BEND CHIEFS SCHEDULE (15-5)
WW—Kinsley Southwest Sox—13-0, 10-0
WWWW—Liberal Tournament (Canon City, Colo. 11-1; Liberal JV 10-1; Liberal FR. 8-0; Liberal 18s 4-2)
LLLL—Barton Tournament (The Barn 0-8; 316 Elite 4-6; Arsenal 7-14; Grays Baseball 3-4)
WW—Dodge City—8-7, 6-5
WL—Salina AAA Falcons—5-2, 5-11
WWWW—Topeka Tournament (Kansas Senators 12-6; Ottawa 3-2; Rossville 6-5; Hays AAA Eagles 8-0)
6-19—at Hays AAA Eagles (9 innings)
6-22—at Salina AAA Falcons
6-25—Hays AAA Eagles, 6 p.m.
6-27/30—at Salina Grand Slam Tournament
7-2—at Dodge City, 5 p.m.
7-3—at Kinsley SW Sox, 6 p.m.
7-5—Salina AAA Falcons, 6 p.m.
7-19-27—AAA Zone Tournament, Great Bend
7-31/8-4—AAA State Tournament, Hays