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Rattlers earn ticket to Championship bracket PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 15 July 2017 06:40


Evans hits a grand slam in 12-2 rout over Junction City

By EARL WATT

• Leader & Times

After surviving a scare in the first game of the 18-and-under Babe Ruth State Tournament Thursday with a walk-off RBI single by Max Valles for a 4-3 win over Parsons, the Liberal Rattlers did not need a nail-biter to win Friday, dominating Junction City 12-2 to move to 2-0 in bracket play and guaranteeing themselves a spot in Monday’s Championship Bracket.

Liberal still has a game to go against Walnut-Ark Valley, but no matter the outcome, the Rattlers will be playing Sunday in the Final Four.alt

Liberal sits at 2-0 with Parsons and Junction City tied at 1-1, and Walnut-Ark City is 0-2.

Walnut-Ark City is eliminated because they cannot do better than 1-2. Parsons and Junction City played Saturday, and the winner moved to 2-1 and will advance to the Championship Bracket while the loser was eliminated  by falling to 1-2.

Liberal can move to 3-0 or fall to 2-1, but even with a loss, Liberal will have the head-to-head tie-breaker over Parsons and Junction City.

Liberal put themselves into the Championship bracket with a strong pitching performance by Tucker Deaton to go along with a grand slam by Cole Evans.

Liberal scored a run in the first inning when Cesar Burciaga grounded out on the infield that allowed Elijah McCarter to score from third, and Liberal had a 1-0 lead.

Liberal jumped out to 2-0 when Alex Yanez scored on an error by the Junction City pitcher.

Evans provided a two-RBI single in the third to extend the lead to 4-0.

Junction City finally broke through against Deaton in the fourth with three straight singles that scored a run and cut Liberal’s lead to 4-1.

But Evans added two more RBIs with another single that scored Kaleb Wilmes and Burciaga, and Liberal led 6-1.

Pancho Terrazas relieved Deaton in the fifth and preserved the 6-1 lead with two scoreless innings in the fifth and sixth.

Junction City’s pithing faltered in the seventh, and two lead-off walks followed by Wilmes being beaned loaded the bases.

Burciaga walked to push Terrazas across the plate, and Evans followed with a grand slam over the left field fence, and Liberal led 11-1.

Deaton added an RBI single later in the inning to give the Rattlers a 12-1 lead.

The Rattlers allowed a run in the seventh after a Burciaga error allowed the lead-off batter to reach, and Terrazas gave up a walk and a single to load the bases.

The first out came by strikeout, and another walk allowed Junction City to score a run before another strikeout and a groundout on the infield ended the game.

Liberal is expected to play at 10 a.m. Sunday morning in a semi-final game with the winner advancing to the championship game.

 

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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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