Post 41 battles Patriots
Grafton gambles against Las Vegas
The Spoilers picked up their second win at the Mid-States “AA” Regional American Legion Tournament in Pratt, Kan. against the Liberty Patriots of Las Vegas last Saturday by a score of 5-3.
Grafton scored all five of their runs in the top of the third inning off starting pitcher Zachary Reed. The determined Spoilers batted around starting with Brett Longtin who drew a walk then moved to third on a sacrifice and an error charged to first baseman Justin Lutes on a routine ground ball by Austin Markel. With Longtin now on third and Markel on second, Garek Droog layed down a sacrifice bunt to score Longtin and move Markel to third. Sam Heuchert walked, then drew a throw from catcher Jack Hale that got away from Lucas Bogues at second. The error allowed Markel to score the Spoilers’ second run. Christian Lunde followed with a double to score Heuchert and then scored himself on Jaime Villarreal’s base hit. Hunter Baldwin made the second out on a ground out to the shortstop Omar Ortiz before Cody Kingsbury lined a rocket to center field to score Villarreal for the fifth run. Charlie Thompson ended the inning on a fly out to Ortiz.
Zak Hernandez picked up the win going four and one third innings. He threw 56 pitches and allowed three runs on six hits. He walked one and struck out one. Adam Mach pitched in relief and got the save. He pitched to three batters, threw 13 pitches and retired the Patriots for the Spoilers win.
Christian Lunde led the Spoilers at the plate going 1-for-2 with a double and two RBIs. Kingsbury, Droog, Villarreal and Baldwin each added a hit.
The Liberty Patriots scored all their runs in the bottom of the fourth. Three consecutive hits by Lutes, Trevor Mullaney and Nicholas Woolery scored one. After a key strikeout by Omar Ortiz and a fly out to Lunde in center field, Brandon Sorantos hit a ground rule double to score Mullaney and Woolery to make the score 5-3 in favor of Grafton. Hernandez forced Al Gourrier to pop out to Baldwin at second for the final out of the fourth to preserve a 5-3 Spoiler lead.
Coach Chad Kliniske didn’t hesitate to bring in Mach in the fifth inning when Hernandez walked the lead-off hitter. Mach first forced Bogues to fly out to Kingsbury in right then Justin Lutes hit a fielder’s choice to retire Gilleres at second before Mullaney flew out to Longtin in left for the final out.
The Spoilers moved on to play Waupun, Wis. on Sunday.