No lead was safe Monday night at Hobart-Detter Field between the Hutchinson Monarchs and Newton Rebels.
The Monarchs completed a four-game sweep which was delayed a week due to inclement weather before the series finale. The wait was worth it as the two teams battled for over three hours with the Monarchs holding on for a 13-10 win.
The two teams scored in bunches. A seven-run fourth inning by Hutchinson was answered by a six-run sixth inning from Newton.
The game was tied entering the bottom of the eighth, but Hutchinson added four more runs to take a moderate lead into the ninth.
And although Newton managed just one run in the top of the ninth, the Rebels were one big swing from tying the game.
Newton did not get that hit, nor did the Rebels record a hit at all in ninth. But four walks was enough to load the bases and make things interesting.
Hutchinson pitcher Byrson Lucas struck out two out of the first three batters, but walked the next three batters, one of which resulted in a run scored.
The Monarchs turned to shortstop Dylan Nedved to pitch with two outs and the bases loaded. On a full count, Nedved struck out Newton’s Lincoln Andrews to shut the door on a Rebels’ comeback attempt.
Nedved is no stranger to closing the game - he does so at the Big 10 level at Iowa.
"We haven’t used him yet, but tonight was the perfect opportunity for him," Hutchinson manager Deron McCue said.
Newton jumped out to a 2-0 lead as Jack Sigrist and Andrews doubled and came around to score in the first inning. Starting pitcher Aaron Bechtel shut Hutchinson down the first three innings, but was chased out the game in the fourth after allowing seven runs - only three of them earned.
The Monarchs sent 13 batters to the plate and scored nine runs on five hits and two Newton errors. Nedved, Austin Callahan, Taylor Barber, Brayden Whitchurch, Anthony Mackenzie, and Clayton Chadwick all recorded RBIs in the inning.
"We had a good inning - we mixed in some doubles, some singles, and some walks," McCue said. "But we have to be more consistent, from inning one to inning nine."
McCue believed his team became comfortable with a seven-run lead, and Newton continued to battle.
"We can’t be a one-inning team," McCue said. "We gave up a few runs, but we battled back and got the win."
In the sixth, the Rebels scored six runs on five hits and a Hutchinson error. Newton tied the game in the seventh as Darrius Gaston hit a double to left-center field to score Lachlan Ross.
The Rebels erased a seven-run deficit in two innings, but the Monarchs put the pressure right back on in the eighth.
Chadwick and Barber each hit RBI doubles in the eighth, and the Monarchs scored two more runs in the inning on wild pitches.
"Our pitchers kept us in it for the most part, but we let that eighth inning kind of get away from us," Newton manager Brett Clark said. "We had a few mishaps on defense, but we were able to come back at the dish and get back in the game."
Down four runs and to their final three outs, the Rebels sent seven to the plate, but only scored one run.
"We battled at the dish in the ninth and put a little pressure on them," Clark said. "That’s what we have to do when we get down. The punches went back and forth; it was a great baseball game all around."
Chadwick and Barber each had three hits to lead the Monarchs; Barber also added a team-high three RBIs.
Andrews had three hits and three RBIs, both of which led the Rebels.
Hutchinson is now 9-1 on the season which ties the record for best start in franchise history. The Monarchs are back in action Tuesday through Friday against Rose Hill.
Hutchinson sits at 7-1 in league play, good for second place behind Cheney, while Rose Hill is 6-2 and in third place in the league.
"Rose Hill has a few Hutchinson JUCO kids, we have some Hutchinson JUCO kids, so it should be a fierce little rivalry," McCue said.
The Newton Rebels took a 6-0 lead after one innng and held on for an 11-10 win over the Wichita Academy 18U team Tuesday night at Eck Stadium.
The Rebels led 10-4 after four innings. Academy fought back with four runs in the fifth, a run in the sixth and a run in the ninth.
Enzo Bonventre led Newton at the plate, going two for three hitting with a home run and four RBIs. Darius Gasi went three for three with three RBIs. Lincoln Andrews went two for three with two RBIs.
Newton starter Rocco Armeni went four innings, striking out five. Carson Frazier went two innings in relief for the win. Jordon Bolt Jackson pitched the ninth inning for the save.
Cole Diffenbaugh and Filip Sirota each drove in two RBIs for Wichita.
Connor Woods pitched a complete game for Wichita, striking out three.
Bechtel, Bolt Jackson 4, Flack 5, Gillig (L) 7. Landwehr 8 and J.Martinez; Schooley, Fortenberry 5, Becker 6, Randall (W) 7, Lucas 9, Nedved (S) 9 and Stephens. HR — N: Andrews (3). Time — 3:26.
Woods (L) and Sirota; Armeni, Rolph 5, Fraizer (W) 5, McClain 7, Landwehr 8, Bolt Jackson (S) 9 and Viloria, Parcero 7. HR — N: Bonventre (5). Time — 2:31.