BY JIM MISUNAS
Great Bend Braves baseball coach Travis Kurth said the amazing story about the Bujanda brothers is one example of the value of summer baseball.
Once again, the Bujanda brothers sparked the American Legion 17-and-under Great Bend Braves past Dodge City 5-4 and 8-2 in Tuesday’s baseball doubleheader. Eduardo Bujanda earned the first-game victory in relief of Jesus Bujanda. The brothers combined for seven runs, five hits and four RBIs in the twin bill.
Both brothers can pitch and catch and play infield spots. They’ve played for the Braves and competed part-time for the 19-and-under Great Bend Chiefs.
“Jesus has been amazing at the plate, batting way over .500,” Kurth said. “It’s fun to see some of these players develop. We’ve got good chemistry. The most pleasing aspect is it’s a good group of players who have responded really well to coaching. They are picking up phases of the game really well.”
The Bujandas will be on full display this weekend when the Braves play Friday, Saturday and Sunday against Russell, the Salina Hawks and Hutchinson’s Junior Legion baseball team.
Kurth and assistant coach Darrin Hall generally give everyone a chance to improve their skills during the summer.
“We play enough games, that everyone gets their chance to play during the weekday games,” Kurth said. “We’ve been able to throw several players who did not pitch in the spring. We want every player to improve as a baseball player.”
The Braves will play three pool games and bracket play will start at noon Sunday at the Great Bend Sports Complex.
“Our ultimate goal is to win our own tournament, but we want to play good baseball and see everyone get playing time,” Kurth said.
BRAVES 5, DODGE CITY 4 — Colin Hall singled home Townshend Kurth to start a 3-run first inning. Jesus Bujanda doubled home Hall and he scored on Eduardo Bujanda’s grounder.
Joey Soupiset’s single scored Jesus Bujanda and Eduardo Bujanda in the fourth inning. Reliever Kurth earned the save by pitching the seventh inning.
BRAVES 8, DODGE CITY 2 — Pitcher Colin Hall worked four innings to earn the second-game victory. The Braves scored three first-inning runs. Eduardo Bujanda singled home Kurth. Jesus Bujanda scored on a passed ball and Eduardo Bujanda scored on a balk.
Calan Haberman scored on Jesus Bujanda’s single. Jesus Bujanda scored on Eduardo Bujanda’s groundball for a 5-1 lead after two innings.
Brave Jacob Hanrahan scored on a third-inning error for a 6-1 lead. Eduardo Bujanda scored on Riley Smith’s fourth-inning sacrifice fly. Smith singled home Powell in the sixth inning.
The Braves (10-2) return home Wednesday to meet Pratt.
BRAVES 5, DODGE CITY 4
GB 300 200 0 — 5 5 3
DC 011 002 0— 4 3 3
Jesus Bujanda, Eduardo Bujanda (3), Kurth (7) and Hall. Guillen, Bacon (5) and Knedler. W—E. Bujanda. L—Guillen. 2B—GB—J. Bujanda 2.
BRAVES 8, DODGE CITY 2
GB 321 101 — 8 6 0
DC 100 100— 2 7 3
Hall, Powell (5) and E. Bujanda. Terrell, Camacho (3) and Jones. W—Hall. L—Terrell. 2B—DC—Knedler, Friess.
GREAT BEND BRAVES
1—Joey Soupiset 2B-OF
3—Cal Kaiser RP-2B
4—Jacob Hanrahan RP-2B
5—Brayden Powell RP-3B
8—Calan Haberman RP-OF
9—Riley Smith RP-2B-C-LF
10—Christian Zahnter RP-SS
13—Colin Hall RP-C-3B-RF
14—Nahum Olivas 2B-OF
24—Eduardo Bujanda RP-1B-C-SS
28—Jayce Christiansen RP-2B-OF
33—Townshend Kurth RP-SS
35—Jesus Bujanda RP-3B-1B-C
42—Dalton Barfield RF
2017 BRAVES (11-3)
WW—Russell 13-3, 14-3
L Chanute 2-8; W Kansas Senators 10-2
L Emporia 1-2, W Mound City 10-9
WW Hays 11-9, 10-8
WW Cunningham 17-0, 36-2
WW Dodge City 5-4, 8-2
WL Pratt 13-8, 5-13
BRAVES BASEBALL CLASSIC
GREAT BEND SPORTS COMPLEX
5 p.m.—Great Bend vs. Russell
7:30 p.m.—Hutchinson vs. Salina Hawks
11 a.m.—Hutchinson vs. Russell
1:30 p.m.—Great Bend vs. Salina Hawks
4 p.m.—Salina Hawks vs. Russell
6:30 p.m.—Great Bend vs. Hutchinson
Noon—No. 1 vs. No. 4
2:30 p.m.—No. 2 vs. No. 3
5 p.m.—Championship game