Seward Takes Over First with Butler Sweep
KSCB News - April 19, 2015 10:56 am
The Seward County Saints went into the day in a three way tie for 1st place in the Jayhawk West Conference standings and will rest their heads tonight alone on top after sweeping a doubleheader from visiting Butler at Brent Gould Field Saturday. In a day full of exciting events, the Saints used a five run 5th inning in game one to come away with an 8-4 victory and in game two they used a potent offensive attack with 10 hits and 13 runs to run rule the Grizzlies 13-3 in seven innings. Between games players and fans of both teams looked on as the Saints Booster Club hosted its first ever Helicopter Ball Drop where a chopper made its way to Brent Gould Field and hovered over the outfield, dropping nearly 500 golf balls onto targets before making a quick retreat. The winners of the event collected over $3,000 in cash prizes as well as a number of other nice prizes including a pair of basketball season tickets, a signed 2002 National Championship team basketball, from the fundraiser.
Butler struck first in the battle of two of the three teams tied atop the Jayhawk West standings going into the day. The Grizzlies got a pair of 1st inning hits, including a two out double to take an early 1-0 lead.
Seward answered right back in their first at bats of the day as they strung together three 1st inning singles, the run scorer coming off the bat of Brandon Rix to tie the game at 1.
Saints starter JB Olson dialed up the heat in the 2nd, needing just 10 pitches to strike out the Butler side to keep the game tied.
The Saints broke the tie in the 3rd as Rix, Dillon Drury, and Justin Graff-Rowe had consecutive two out singles to plate a run and make it a 2-1 game.
Olson again worked a 1-2-3 inning in the 4th and the Saints rewarded him with another tally, getting a one out double from Brandon Urquizo to stretch their lead to 3-1.
The Grizzlies showed why they have been the team to beat most of the Jayhawk West season in the 5th, getting back to back RBI knocks with two outs to push back in front 4-3.
Their lead didn’t last long though as Seward went to work in the bottom half of the frame, scoring five times on just two hits to take their largest lead of the game at 8-4.
That was all that Olson would need on this day as the Saints sophomore ace blew through the Butler order in the 6th and again in the 7th, getting his ninth strikeout of the game to end it in style as Seward collected the 8-4 game one win.
The Saints offense outhit Butler 12-8 in the game, getting 2 hits and 3 RBI’s from Rix and 2 hits and 2 RBI’s from Urquizo in the win. Olson, as usual, went the distance for the Saints, allowing 8 hits and 4 runs without walking a batter and striking out 9 to improve to 8-3 on the year. Olson earns his 15th career win for Seward to tie him with Jesse Cornejo and Kevin Knez for 7th all-time in the Saints record books.
SEWARD COUNTY/BUTLER GAME ONE BOX SCORE<http://www.sewardsaints.com/sports/bsb/2014-15/boxscores/20150418_cwzs.xml>
It was Seward striking again in the 1st inning in game two of the doubleheader as the Saints got a run right off the bat on an RBI single from Rix to grab the early 1-0 lead.
The Saints added to their lead in the 2nd on an error by the Grizzlies to make it 2-0 game and starting pitcher Hayden Howard kept the score there with another zero in the top half of the 3rd to quickly send the game to the 4th with Seward leading it 2-0.
Butler picked up their first run of the game with a solo home run in the top half of the 4th to make it a 2-1 game, but the Saints answered in a big way in the bottom half of the frame.
A double by Jared Ledbetter started the Saints 4th and Logan Nethercot followed that with a ringing triple off the center field wall to score him and put Seward up 3-1. Nethercot scored on a wild pitch to make it a 4-1 game, but the Saints weren’t done yet. Later in the inning Rix doubled home a pair to make it 6-1 and after a sac fly from Drury, Nethercot picked up his second extra base hit of the inning with a flair double down the left field line to clear the bases with two outs and blow the game open to 10-1.
Seward added three more runs in the 6th as Alex White drove home Chad Kennedy with a sac fly and his high school teammate Brent Williams drove home two more with a two out single to open the Saints lead to 13-1.
Down to their final out in the game, Butler got a two run single to make it a 13-3 game, but Seward reliever Nathan Dockery slammed the door after that, getting a strikeout to end things in the 7th and give the Saints a 13-3 run rule win.
Seward used 10 hits, including 6 for extra bases, and 7 Butler walks in the victory. Nethercot finished his best game as a Saint 2 for 2 with 4 RBI’s and 2 runs scored in the win, he also walked twice for Seward. Rix had his second straight multi-hit and multi-RBI game as he finished 3 for 5 with 3 RBI’s and Williams had 2 hits and 2 RBI’s in the win. Howard earned the win on the bump for the Saints, improving to 5-2 on the year as he went 6 2/3 innings, allowing 3 hits and 1 earned run while striking out 8.
SEWARD COUNTY/BUTLER GAME TWO BOX SCORE <http://www.sewardsaints.com/sports/bsb/2014-15/boxscores/20150418_v0fe.xml>
The Saints remain red hot and are now winners of 16 of their last 18 to improve to 28-19 on the year. The Saints more importantly win their seventh and eighth straight Jayhawk West contests to take over 1st place in the league standings at 17-9. Butler falls back to even on the year at 23-23 and is now two games behind the Saints and one behind 2nd place Dodge City at 15-11 with six games to go.
The Saints and Grizzlies will lock up again in doubleheader action on Monday at Brent Gould Field in Liberal with a 3:00 start to wrap up the series.