Rebels claim no-hit win over Vipers
The Newton Rebels have gone through a little turmoil in the last week and desperately needed something positive to happen.
That positive came Monday night against the Wichita Vipers, a U18 team, with pitchers Cason Jacobs and Brady Kreutzer combining on a no-hitter in a 10-0 Rebel win.
The game was called after eight innings on the 10-run rule.
Jacobs pitched for the win, going 6.1 innings, allowing three walks and 10 strikeouts.
Kruetzer finished the game, allowing a walk.
“It was my fastball,” said Jacobs, a freshman at Newman University. “In Kansas, you just need to keep your fastballs in the 80s. I felt like my fastball was working tonight and I was in the zone. I was working at staying focused between innings. I wanted to have fun, but I was just trying to keep focused out there, getting the right pitch at the right time.”
After last week’s 0-4 series against the SCL leading Cheney Diamond Dawgs, several players left the team.
“You have to keep the team fun and exciting,” Jacobs said. “You have to keep them involved. You want to go out and win. We want to do that in the next couple of days. We want to keep the fans up and excited.”
“After four days off, we needed to get people back on the field and in the groove,” Newton manager Brett Clark said. “We got a good start on the mound, and that helped tremendously. If we can pitch, we can stay in the game. It’s good for us. Every game is important. Going into the second half, we need to be playing well. The guys that we have, everybody is ready to go. The guys we have want to play. This is the group that’s going to finish the summer with. We’re going to roll with them.”
Andrew Brautman and Cory Mason each went two for four hitting for Newton with an RBI. Thomas Capllonch drove in two runs. Nolan Riley, Justin Barnes, Connor Swink and Aiden Corrigan each added an RBI.
Riley was part of two double plays, including a solo twin killing. He nearly had a third, but a ball hit to him was ruled foul be just a few inches.
“They were trying to be early on their pitching,” Riley said. “I was lucky I got some balls today and made some routine plays. Moving forward, all of our games are must win. We’re going to do what we can to make them happen. We just have to stay positive and do things the right way. We need to play baseball the way it’s supposed to be played. Not worrying about the drama off the field. We need to keep it between the lines.”
Newton broke the game open in the bottom of the first inning, scoring five runs on one hit with two hit batters, three walks and an error. Newton added a pair of runs in the third inning, two more in the sixth inning and a run in the bottom of the eighth on back-to-back doubles.
Corbin Jones lasted just one inning for the Vipers, taking the loss.
Halstead’s Kaleb Wise pitched two innings for the Vipers, allowing two runs on two hits with a walk and a strikeout.
Fellow Halsteadian Jackson Swift finished the game, allowing a run on two hits.
Trent Canaan pitched two scoreless innings, walking one and striking out two.
TUESDAY’S GAME — The Rebels won two in a row for the first time this season, stopping the 316 Elite-Jones 7-1 Tuesday.
The 316 Elite is an 18U team. Both the Elite and Vipers came in to fill dates when the El Dorado Broncos elected not to compete this season.
Newton starter Jack Rector went six innings, allowing a run on four hits with three walks and nine strikeouts. Spencer Maley pitched the seventh inning, allowing a walk. Zach Gillig finished the game finished the game, striking out three of the seven batters he faced, including his own brother.
Rector had to get out of a tough spot early, but settled down to shut out the Elite for five innings.
“I didn’t have my best stuff, but the best pitcher are able to adjust,” Rector said. “I was able to get my fast ball over. I was able to locate it. I was able to go inside and outside. I did a little better after the first inning. (The pitching coach) just said to take a breath, you know what you can do. I just took it from there.”
The Rebels have been struggling this season with poor starts in the first inning.
“I just needed to get my composure and calm down,” Rector said. “I knew I could do it. Just settling down helped me.”
Anthony Zellner went three for four hitting for Newton with two RBIs. Zellner was a home run short of hitting for the cycle.
“I don’t think I would have (got a home run) anyway,” Zellner said. “I just try to hit the ball. This week has been huge for us. We’ve been struggling a lot. I haven’t been here the whole time, but from what I’ve seen here, we’ve been growing. This is a big-time payoff for that. This will give more people individual confidence. We’ve been confident as a team as a whole. We’re college baseball players. We’re coming together now. This could help us.”
A junior at Western Oregon from Salem, Ore., it was rare for Zellner to play in better weather in Newton at this time of the year than what he has back home, where temperatures have been in the triple digits.
“My coach knows the head coach here,” Zellner said. “I needed a place to play and just landed here. I came here to play baseball. It was 117 yesterday in Salem, Ore., so I kind of flip-flopped the weather. It was a lot nicer here.”
Brautman went two for three hitting for the Rebels with an RBI.
The Elite loaded the bases with one out in the top of the first on a single and a pair of walks, scoring a run on a one-out single. The Rebels came back with three runs in the bottom of the first on three hits, a walk and a hit batter. Brautman hit a double in the fourth inning to drive in a run. Zellner dropped a two-out double between the right fielder and left fielder for an RBI in the fifth inning.
A Zellner triple and a Ricky Hockett single with two outs in the bottom of the seventh led to a Rebel run.
REBELS IN THE ALL-STAR GAME — Four members of the Newton Rebels were selected for the Sunflower Collegiate League All-Star game — Cory Mason, Andrew Brautman, Zach Gillig and Nolan Riley.
The All-Star Game is 6 p.m. July 5 at Eck Stadium in Wichita.
There also will be a home run derby and post-game fireworks.
Tickets are available at http://pointstreaksites.com/view/sunflowerbaseball/monday-sunflower-showcase-at-eck.
Jones (L), Wise 2, Canaan 4, Villatoro 6, Dean 7, Swift 8 and Dean, Wanless 6; Jacobs (W), Kreutzer 7 and Doshier. Time — 2:21.
Turner (L), Thompson 5, Wilson 7, Davis 8 and Henderson; Rector (W), Maley 7, Gillig 8 and Zellner. Time — 2:20.
Mark Schnabel can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org