OTTAWA – Errors plagued the Hays Eagles on Friday in their first loss of the Class AAA Legion State Tournament.
The Eagles had a three-run lead against Great Bend in the championship semifinals, but six errors proved costly in a 10-7 loss, the Eagles’ first in the double-elimination tournament.
The loss drops Hays into an elimination game against defending champ and host Ottawa at 10 a.m. Saturday. The winner moves on to the championship round, while the loser is done.
The Eagles had a 3-0 lead after Grant Coffman had a double in the first inning that plated a pair of runs. Coffman, also the starting pitcher, was hurt for four runs, though, in the third inning as Great Bend took the lead.
Hays, though, responded with three runs of its own in the top of the fourth, helped out by a one-out double by Trey Riggs that scored Brady Kreutzer and Jace Armstrong. Riggs later scored on a passed ball to give Hays the 6-4 lead.
Great Bend, though, answered with two in the fourth to tie things up, then eventually took the lead for good with three runs in the fifth inning and one in the sixth.
Coffman took the loss. He gave up all 10 runs (six earned) on eight hits with three strikeouts and four walks. Kreutzer and Riggs each had a pair of hits, while Riggs and Coffman each drove in three runs as the Eagles fell to 21-14 facing elimination. Hays beat Ottawa to open the tournament Wednesday.