The Great Bend AAA American Legion baseball team struggled in a doubleheader against Hays on Tuesday evening.
The Chiefs fell 12-1 in four innings in Game 1 and 9-2 in Game 2.
“We didn’t show up the ball park ready to play in Game 1, definitely,” Great Bend head coach Michael Stettinger said. “We had a few positives. We hit a few balls hard right at people.
“Game 2, we had a little better game. Tristan Hall gave us a good start on the mound. Anson (Hall) did a good job relieving, but really got to tip the caps to Hays. They swung the bats well.”
In Game 1, Hays jumped ahead early.
The Chiefs and starting pitcher Jaxx Hillman gave up six runs in the first inning. Hays tacked on two runs in each of the following innings to enact the run rule.
Hillman went 2 2/3 innings, giving up 10 runs (six earned), 10 hits and three walks while striking out one. Tyler Nuss came on in relief, going 1 1/3 innings. He gave up four hits and two runs (one earned).
“We haven’t played in a week because of rain, so we really wanted to get a lot of pitchers out there before (the tournament in Salina),” Stettinger said. “We got some good innings from several of the guys today. The ball just seemed to drop in open space whenever (Hays) got a hold of something.”
Shade Wondra recorded the lone RBI for Great Bend, going 2-for-2.
In Game 2, Great Bend found itself behind early yet again.
This time, the Chiefs trailed 4-0 heading into the bottom of the third inning.
Matt Zecha changed that.
After a lead-off double and a walk, Zecha grounded out but drove in a runner from third base.
Hays regained its four-run lead by scoring a run in the top of the fourth to make it 5-1.
In the bottom of the fifth, Zecha again grounded out. He also drove in another run, making it 5-2 heading into the top of the sixth.
Tristan Hall started the game, going two innings. He gave up three earned runs on three hits and two walks. He had two strikeouts.
Coming on in relief, Anson Hall pitched 2 2/3 innings, giving up eight runs. He was relieved by Bryce Beck, who went the final 1 1/3 innings and gave up one hit and recorded two strikeouts.
In the sixth, Hays added four more runs, making it 9-2 heading into the bottom of the inning.
Great Bend will be competing in the Kansas Grand Slam in Salina on Thursday through Sunday.