HHS opens Diamond Classic with two wins
Published on -5/4/2012, 10:16 AM
By KLINT SPILLER
Hays High's defense was on display Thursday.
The Hays High baseball team locked down its opponents in both games at the 30th annual Western Plains Diamond Classic, shutting out Goodland 9-0 in the first game and Colby 6-0 in the nightcap.
Hays High (13-1) made two double plays, several spectacular catches and just one error in 14 innings. Junior Dan Bittel threw a runner out at home from center field against Goodland, and all of the Hays High pitchers had good games.
"We were ready to play on the defensive end," said Hays High coach Frank Leo.
Against Colby (12-2), the Indians jumped out to an early 5-0 lead on two Eagle errors, three wild pitches and timely Indian hitting.
However, Hays High's offense grounded to a halt after that, going scoreless for the next four innings and twice being retired in order. No Indian finished with more than one hit against Colby.
"I thought after the first inning we thought it was going to be too easy," Leo said. "We scored some runs and did some nice things. ... Then we just kind of laid back. We didn't make adjustments."
In the sixth inning, the Indians took advantage of more Colby mistakes.
Hays High catcher Jake Sedbrook was hit by a pitch, stole second, advanced to third on a throwing error and was batted in on the next at bat, extending the lead to 6-0.
Senior Tyler Wooldridge (3-0) got the win in six innings, allowing six hits and a walk with three strikeouts.
"Pitching was great," said Indian senior right fielder Taylor Renz. "They threw on the outside corner and got me a couple fly balls out there. It was just a good day all around."
Colby junior starter Zack Stones (2-1) lasted all six innings and allowed just six hits, two earned runs and one walk while striking out three.
In the first game against Goodland (5-12), Hays High also took advantage of mistakes to get many of its runs.
Hays High runners advanced or scored on five wild pitches, reached base on three walks and scored on an error in the first two innings.
However, the Indians also had four hits, and Hays High led 5-0 heading into the third.
"We took advantage of a lot of wild pitches, but we've got to get on base to make that happen," Leo said. "I thought we squared some balls up very well."
Hays High scored two more runs in the third and fourth to lead 9-0.
"With this tournament being tough, I think we came out a little scared, but we battled as the game went on and made quite a few simple mistakes," said Goodland head coach Devlin Mull. "The pitchers can't be behind in the count against good teams like this."
In the fifth, Hays High began subbing, and some younger Indians got some at bats.
"We are going to lose a great senior class, and we've got to start preparing for next year," Leo said. "The more we can get these young guys' feet wet, the better off we are going to be."
Colby struggled in the second game of the day, losing to Salina Central 14-5.
Salina Central (9-6) scored five runs in the first inning and Colby responded with two in the bottom of the first.
Down 10-2 in the bottom of the fifth, Colby's senior first baseman Braden Sager hit a three-RBI home run over the right field wall -- Colby's first home run of the season.
However, the Eagles just couldn't keep pace with the Mustangs.
"I was happy with our at bats," said Colby coach Rick Williams. "We didn't necessarily produce as much as we'd like to, but I thought our at bats were good."
Goodland was scheduled to play Goddard today at 1 p.m., followed by Salina Central vs. Goddard, Goodland vs. Colby and Hays High vs. Salina Central.