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Rival eliminates Legion Chiefs
Colin Hall
Great Bend Chief Colin Hall slides for a triple with Ottawa's Aidan Michel waiting for a throw. - photo by Photo by Jim Misunas, Great Bend Tribune


HAYS — All it took was one mistake and the Great Bend Chiefs were in deep trouble.

The rival Hays Eagles scored eight unearned runs to earn a hard-fought 14-8 victory Friday to eliminate the Chiefs in the AAA/AA American Legion state baseball tournament. The Chiefs had to beat Hays and hold the Eagles under 10 runs in pool play to advance to Saturday's semifinals.

The Chiefs (25-16) put themselves in jeopardy in the pool tiebreaker by losing 4-3 to Emporia in the seventh inning.

"It's tough to have it end. I'm proud of my team. They fought hard all year," said Travis Kurth, Great Bend coach. "Emporia was the game that haunted us."

Brock Lummus handed the Eagles a 1-0 lead on an RBI single. Riley Smith and Zahnter delivered RBIs to give the Chiefs a 2-1 lead after two innings.

But Hays made the Chiefs pay for a critical dropped pop fly with an 8-run third inning. Dom Bainter and Trey Riggs delivered two-run hits and Josh Haynes, Cody Petersen and Palmer Hutchison added RBI singles off losing pitcher Townshend Kurth for a 9-2 lead.

Tate Garcia delivered a two-run single and Haynes added an RBI single for the Eagles' final runs.

The Chiefs kept battling to prevent a run rule loss. Christian Zahnter singled home Carson Smith in the fourth inning. Colin Hall doubled home Calan Haberman and Alex Schremmer scored on Carson Smith's fifth-inning sacrifice fly.  Joey Soupiset doubled home Kurth and Riley Smith singled home Soupiset for the Chiefs' final seventh-inning runs.

"They've got big hearts down there in the dugout," Kurth said. "We squared it up and put the baseball in play. They battled to the end . They have it everything we had."

Kurth said the Hays lineup was tough to retire. The Eagles won five of six games against the Chiefs. Hays beat the Chiefs 13-12 in the Zone championship.

"Hays is tough to play," he said. "Our luck ran out. The Emporia game came back to haunt us. That's the difference."

HAYS 5, SABETHA 4 (SEMIFINAL) — Brady Kreutzer's single scored Trey Riggs with the game-winning run after Riggs singled home Cody Petersen and Palmer Hutchison for a three-run seventh-inning rally. 

EMPORIA 3, IOLA 2, 11 innings (SEMIFINAL) — Jace Stewart singled home Sawyer Sladen with the game-winning run in the 11th inning.

EMPORIA 7, HAYS 5 (CHAMPIONSHIP) — Hayden Baumwert doubled home Cade Kohlmeier, John Miller and Camden Kirmer for the game-winning hit. Emporia's Beau Baumgardner's two-run homer sparked a rally from a 5-2 deficit against Hays pitcher Tate Garcia. 


AAA POOL—Hays Eagles 3-0, Emporia 2-1, Great Bend Chiefs 1-2, Ottawa Arrows 0-3

AA POOL—Iola 3-0, Sabetha 2-1, Russell 1-2, Norton 1-2

7-31—Sabetha 15, Norton 0; Emporia 4, Great Bend Chiefs 3; Iola 10, Russell 0; Hays 14, Ottawa 0

8-1—GB Chiefs 13, Ottawa Arrows 3; Sabetha 17, Russell 1; Hays 12, Emporia 2; Iola 10, Norton 0 

8-2—Norton 10, Russell 9; Emporia 5, Ottawa 1; Iola 5, Sabetha 4; Hays 14, GB Chiefs 8

8-3—Hays Eagles 5, Sabetha 4; Emporia 3, Iola 2, 11 innings; CHAMPIONSHIP—Emporia 7, Hays 5

Hays Eagles 200 210 0 — 5 7 0

Emporia 200 023 x — 7 8 1

Garcia, Hutchison (6) and Lummus. Beatty, Stewart (5) and Baumwart, Baumgardner. W—Stewart. L—Garcia. 2B—E—Baumwart, Kohlmeier; H—Krautzer 2, Petersen. HR—E—Baumgardner.

Hays Eagles 108 310 1 — 14 15 3 

GB Chiefs 020 121 2 — 8 9 3

Petersen, Dreiling (7) and Lummus. Hall, Kurth (1), Hall (4) and Carson Smith, Hall (1), C. Smith (4). W—Petersen, 6-0. L—Kurth, 6-5. 2B—H—Riggs; GB—Soupiset, Hall.

Iola 000 200 000 00 — 2 6 1 

Emporia 020 000 000 01 — 3 11 1 

Bycroft, Leonard (8) and Whitney. Baumwart, Kohlmeier (9) and Baumgardner. W—Kohlmeier, 8-1. L—Leonard. 2B—E—Slayden, Miller; Iola—Bycroft.

Sabetha 120 010 0 — 4 7 1

Hays Eagles 001 010 3 — 5 6 2

Becker, Argabright and Frey. Riggs and Lummus. W—Riggs, 8-2. L—Argabright.. 2B—H—Petersen; S—Herrmann, Barber. 3B—H—Sennett.