EMPORIA — The Hays Sr. Eagles bounced back in their second game of pool play in the Class AAA State Legion Baseball Tournament, taking an 11-4 win over the Topeka Senators on Thursday at Soden’s Grove.
The Eagles (33-6-1) took control early, scoring two in the first inning after a Topeka error and an RBI single from Jamison Martin. Hays tacked on three more in the second inning to open up a 5-0 lead. Brady Kreutzer had an RBI groundout, Palmer Hutchison brought in a run with a sacrifice fly and Trey Riggs had an RBI double in the frame.
Hays later broke it open with a five-run seventh inning to push the lead to 11-2.
Kreutzer had three hits in the leadoff spot and three runs driven in, while Riggs, Martin and Dawson Harman each added two hits.
Martin went six innings on the mound, allowing four runs (two earned) on four hits with six strikeouts and three walks. Braden Stauth closed out the seventh inning for Hays.
The Eagles, now 1-1 in the tournament, will finish out pool play at 6 p.m. against Emporia on Friday. The top two teams out of the pool advance to Saturday’s semifinals.
Emporia moved to 2-0 in pool play after beating Nickerson 3-2 on Thursday. Nickerson handed Hays a 4-3 loss in the pool play opener on Wednesday.
Hays could clinch a spot in the semifinals with a win and a Nickerson loss to Topeka on Friday. If Emporia, Nickerson and Hays finish pool play at 2-1, the tiebreaker would be fewest total runs allowed.