13 Walks too many for Rebels in loss

Mark Schnabel
The Kansan

The Newton Rebel baseball team had the offense and defense it needed against the Haysville Aviators Sunday in the opening game of a five-game series in Sunflower Collegiate League play at Klein-Scott Field.

But 13 walks and five hit batters — including eight walks in the first two innings — put the Rebels in too deep a hole, leading to a 12-8 loss.

“If you can’t pitch and keep yourself in the game, the offense can do anything they want,” Newton manager Brett Clark said. “We have to pitch better. The pitchers have to come in and do their job on the mound, especially the bullpen. Our bullpen guys have to come in and fill up the strike zone. They just have to get outs. We have an off-day on Tuesday, and that’s going to help. We have to get more innings out of our starters. They have to get five at least. That saves our bullpen for later on in the series. In a five-game series, we have to have a good start.”

Haysville starter Jonathan Garza II went six innings for the win, allowing two earned runs on five hits with three walks and three strikeouts.

Against the Aviators, eight walks and three wild pitches and a hit batter led to six Haysville runs first two innings. Austin Albright hit a two-run single.

Haysville loaded the bases with no outs to lead off the third inning, but a force out at home and a pair of strikeouts ended the inning with no runs.

With two outs in the bottom of the third, Newton’s Trey Winget hit a two-run triple. Eli Hickman hit an RBI single in the bottom of the fourth, a run aided by two errors.

With bases loaded and one out in the top of the seventh, Garrett McCarthy hit a two-run single. Haysville appeared to put things away with three runs in the eighth to go up by eight runs.

The first four Newton batters in the bottom of the eighth reached base on hits. Thomas Capllonch hit an RBI double, followed by a two-run single for Connor Allen. With two outs, Ricky Hockett hit a two-run double, but was thrown out trying to extend the play to a triple.

Lamarcus Jones hit an RBI single for Haysville with one out in the top of the ninth. Newton put two runners on base with one out in the bottom of the ninth, but a pair of ground outs ended the game

Albright led Haysville at the plate, going three for five hitting. Hickman and Grade each went two for three for Newton.

Newton used seven pitchers in the game. D.J. Vergini took the loss. The most effective was Spencer Maley, who threw 3.1 innings and allowed a hit, two walks and four strikeouts. Zach Gillig struck out two of the four batters he faces in an inning.

Saturday, Newton gave up four runs in the bottom of the second inning to trail 4-1. The Rebels came back with two runs in the fourth inning, three runs in the fifth and five runs in the sixth. Great Bend came up with a run in the eighth.

Nolan Riley went three for four hitting for Newton with two RBIs. Winget, Connor Allen each went two for five with two RBIs. Allen hit a home run. Cory Mason went two for five with an RBI.

Dylan Blomquist drove in two runs for Great Bend.

Nick Grade pitched three scoreless innings of relief for the win, striking out four. David Blackburn took the loss for Great Bend. 

In Friday’s game, a slow start in the first inning snowballed in the late innings, leading to a 12-1 loss for the Newton Rebels to the Great Bend Bat Cats Friday night in Sunflower Collegiate League play at Klein-Scott Field.

The game was called after seven innings on the 10-run rule.

Newton starter Rocco Armeni lasted four innings, leaving the game after getting injured while warming up for the fifth inning. Armeni allowed five runs on four hits with two walks and four strikeouts.

“He got a calf cramp or something like that,” Clark said. “We had to get him out and get him fixed up so he’ll be ready for the next time. He settled in a little, bit but cramps like that happen. We just have to compete. When we compete, we give ourselves a chance. When we don’t compete, we roll over and the same stuff is going to continue to happen. If we start to compete, we give ourselves a chance to turn things around.”

Jake Kuntzendorf pitched six innings for Great Bend for the win.

Great Bend scored five runs in the top of the first. With bases loaded and no outs, Zane Spinn hit a two-run double. Micah Grove hit a two-run single. Tyler Henry drove in a run with a sacrifice fly.

The Bat Cats put two runners on with no outs in the second inning, but failed to score.

With two outs in the top of the fifth, Great Bend scored a run on a walk, on a wild pitch and an error. Great Bend scored on a two-out wild pitch in the top of the sixth.

Six walks and three wild pitches led to three Great Bend runs in the top of the seventh.

Great Bend finished the series 8-2, second place in the SCL.

Newton is 2-9, while Haysville is 4-7 in league play.

After a game Monday at Eck Stadium in Wichita, the two teams will meet Wednesday and Thursday in Haysville.

“Hopefully, these guys are ready,” Clark said. “It’s a nice yard, but we still have to play the game. If we play the game well and do it the right way, you have a chance to win.”

Friday’s game

Grt.Bnd.;500;031;3;—;12;7;1

Newton;000;100;0;—;1;5;2

Knutzendorf (W, 2-0), Hendricks 7 and Forrest; Armeni (L, 0-2), Rabe 5, Maley 6, Virgini 7, Wallingford 7 and Allen.

Saturday’s game

Newton;100;235;000;—;11;16;2

Grt.Bnd.;040;000;010;—;5;4;3

Graham, Grade (W, 1-0) 2, Gillig 5, n/a 7 and Allen; Escobdo, Shadrick 3, Blackburn (L, 0-1), Parker 8 and Baumbach, Torres, Forrest. HR — N: Allen (1). Time — 3:10.

Sunday’s game

Haysville;330;000;231;—;12;10;3

Newton;002;100;050;—;8;11;2

Garza (W, 1-0) II, Herold 7, Schoonbeck 8, McDougle and Garner; Vergini (L, 0-1), Rabe 2, Maley 2, Gillig 6, Winget 7, Hockett 8, Frazier 9 and Doshier, Allen 8. Time — 3:35.

Mark Schnabel can be reached at mschnabel@thekansan.com