PRATT, Kan. – The pitching for the Seward County baseball team (9-8, 0-2) struggled to find any rhythm on Thursday, losing their conference double header opener to Pratt 12-6 and 18-12.
GAME ONE RECAP
The start of game one got out of hand quickly for the Saints with Ethan Earhart (2-3) earning the start on the mound. He just just 0.2 innings giving up four runs on four hits. West Reddell (2.0 IP) and Braeden Gould (3.1 IP) came in for relief, each giving up four runs on seven combined hits.
The Saints got on board first with a good offensive inning. Brendan Madsen led off with a single before Braxton Allen pushed him to third with a double to centerfield to set up a sac fly situation for Dylan Paul. Following the sac fly, Cayde Ward doubled to center field to score Allen, making the 2-0. Joe Kuhn got hit by a pitch. An error trying to pick off Ward allowed him to get past third base and score the third run of the inning for Seward
The Beavers quickly took the lead in the bottom of the first. A walk and single put runners at first and second for Pratt. Sean Johnson singled to right field to score the first run of the inning for the Beavers. A hit-by-pitch loaded the bases for Keaton Gage, who promptly drove all three runners in with a double to left field, making it 4-3.
Pratt used another four-run inning in the third to extend their lead to 8-3. A walk and hit-by-pitch set up Khalir Vazquez for a three-run bomb. Trace Maddux reached on a single with the next at-bat before Elerie Rivera was hit by another pitch. The Beavers put on the double-steal to allow Kenneth Gonzalez to hit a sac fly, earning their fourth run of the inning.
Seward got one back in the fourth from a Jose Caraballo double to right field, scoring Kuhn, who reached on a leadoff single to left field, making the score 8-4.
When the Beavers scored, they scored big, using a three-run fifth inning to make the score 11-4. Maddux reached on an error to start the inning and Rivera followed with a single to left field, but an error allowed Maddux to reach third and Rivera advance to second. Gonzalez took the next at-bat and singled to center field to score two runs. Two fielders' choices loaded the bases for the Beavers, and Trevor Wetzel took advantage with a sac fly to center field.
The Saints got two more to go in the sixth. Singles by Cole Bergdall and Cruz Shope put runners at first and second for Braxton Allen, who drove both in with a double to right field, bringing the game to 11-6.
The Beavers made up one run in the bottom of the sixth with a solo home run by Rivera, making the final score 12-6.
GAME TWO RECAP
Tanner King (1-1) started on the mound in game two, pitching 2.1 innings. He gave up 10 runs on 10 hits to Beavers before getting pulled. Brayden Conner (4.1 IP), Blake Hale (0.0 IP) and Brooks Williams (1.1 IP) pitched the final 5.2 innings in relief.
The Beavers got on board first in the bottom of the opening inning. Two singles put runners at first and third. An error on an attempted stolen base at second allowed the runner at third to score. A sac bunt with the next at-bat scored the second run of the inning to make it 2-0.
The Saints got on board in the second inning from errors that the Beavers caused. Kuhn singled to center field before Bergdall walked. An error on a pick-off attempt pushed the runner to first and second before a wild pitch allowed Kuhn to cross home plate. An error by the pitched off a Jacob Nielsen hit scored Bergdall to even the game at 2-2.
After two outs to start the third inning, Ward homered to give the Saints a one-run lead, but it was short lived as the Beavers exploded for an eight-run inning in the bottom of the third.
Kenneth Gonzalez was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. A Johnson single to right field and an error allowed Gonzalez to score from first base, while Johnson advanced to second on the throw. Ben Van Diest double to right field and score Johnson.
Ashton Roy walked to put runners at 1st and 2nd for the Beavers. An error by Bergdall scored Diest and put runners on first and third for Darrian Aldridge, who singled to right field, scoring Roy and bringing the game to 6-3. Maddux singled to right field to load the bases before Rivera singled to right field to score two of the bases runners. A drop third strike and error on the throw to first allowed Rivera and Maddux to both score to complete their eight-run inning, bringing the game to 10-3.
The Saints got two back in the top of the fourth. Kuhn led off with a home run to score one run. Bergdall doubled to center and was brought home on a single to right field by Madsen, making the game 10-5.
The Beavers started the bottom of the fifth with a single and double to runners at 2nd and 3rd. Gonzalez reached on an error by Carraballo, scoring both bases runner. A single three batters later scored Gonzalez.
A three-run sixth inning made up some ground for the Saints, but the Beavers quickly fired back. With two outs already on the board, Bergdall singled down the right field line. Nielsen singled to centerfield, but a misplayed ball allowed him to advance to third, scoring Bergdall. Madsen singled to right field to score Nielsen before Allen ended the scoring the with a double to right field to score Madsen, making it 13-8.
Two singles and a hit-by-pitch loaded the bases for the Beavers in the bottom of the 7th. Three straight walks gave the Beavers three free runs, extending their lead to 16-8 at the end of the 7th.
Paul led off the 8th with a walk and reached third with a Madsen single to right field. Allen singled to bring in Paul, but that was all the Saints could muster in the 8th, as they trailed 16-9.
Pratt got two more in the bottom of the eighth. Rivera led off with a double to left field before Johnson drove him in with a single and advanced to second on the throw to home plate. A walk loaded the bases for the Beavers and another drove in the final run for Pratt.
Seward needed a big inning to make an improbable comeback. A walk and hit-by-pitch put runners on 1st and 2nd. Dylan Paul singled to centerfield and the fielder misplayed it, allowing both runners to score, while Paul advanced to third. Following a fly out, Nielsen singled to center field to score Paul, bring the game to 18-12. The Saints couldn't get any more to go, losing game two.
The Saints will face Pratt for another double header on Saturday at 1:00 p.m., this time hosting them at Brent Gould Field.