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Bee Jays hit 5 home runs in 9-6 win PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 12 July 2017 09:29


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Nate Crossman throws the ball back to the infield against El Dorado earlier this season. Crossman hit a home run Tuesday along with Jaron Robinson, Cale O’Donnell, Colton Onstott and Garrett Scott in a 9-6 win over Derby. L&T photo/Earl Watt

By EARL WATT

• Leader & Times

Liberal pounded out 19 hits and five home runs against the league-leading Derby Twins Tuesday, and the Twins only had seven hits. But Derby was one batter away from sending the tying run to the plate in the ninth after a late grand slam by the Twins before Trent Maloney recorded the final out in a 9-6 Bee Jay win.

Liberal’s win coupled with a double header sweep by Hays over Dodge City shuffled the first place team in the conference for the third time in five days.

Liberal led Friday, and Derby took the league lead Saturday. By the end of the day Tuesday, Hays had moved into first.

The Bee Jays used the long ball on a small field to knock off Derby, and even a ninth inning grand slam by the Twins wasn’t enough to come back.

After falling behind early in three straight losses to Great Bend, Liberal took the early lead in Derby, scoring three runs with two outs in the first inning including a two-run shot by Colton Onstott and an RBI single by Kyle Schmidt, and the Bee Jays led 3-0.

Back-to-back home runs in the second from Garrett Scott and Cale O’Donnell gave the Bee Jays a 5-0 lead.

Zach Autin gave up a one-out walk to Bret Fehr, and it led to the first Twin run when Johnathan Thibodeau hit a two-out RBI single, and Liberal’s lead was cut to 5-1.

But the Bee Jays continued to use the deep ball to rough up the Derby pitching staff in the third when Schmidt doubled to lead off the inning, and Nate Crossman followed with a home run, and Liberal had a 7-1 lead.

Jaron Robinson led off the fourth with a home run, and Marcus Shoemaker added an RBI single later in the inning to give the Bee Jays a 9-1 lead.

Derby cut the lead to 9-2 in the seventh with an RBI single by Jacob Means.

But Liberal never added to the lead after the fourth inning, and Derby led off the ninth with back-to-back singles against Thomas Garland. The next two Twins struck out before Garland beaned Means to load the bases, and Fehr followed with a grand slam to cut the lead to 9-6.

Garland faced one more batter and gave up a single before Liberal coach Daniel Parker moved Trent Maloney from third to the mound, and despite throwing three straight balls against Thibodeau, Maloney recovered to force a full count and induced a grounder to third for the final out, and Liberal earned the 9-6 win.

In addition to five home runs, Liberal also had four doubles (Robinson and Schmidt each doubled, and Shoemaker had two).

Liberal still controls its own destiny in the Jayhawk League. Tonight, Liberal will face Derby again, and the Bee Jays can pull into a tie for second with a win. Liberal will complete the season series with Derby Thursday, and then they will return home to face Hays for three games in a series that could determine the Jayhawk League championship.

Liberal will finish the season with three games at home against last-place Oklahoma City.

While Liberal faces Derby tonight, Hays will play another double header with Dodge City and a single game Thursday, making the Larks play five games in three days.

 

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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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