Raiders roll to season-opening sweep
The reigning champion BJ Raiders made light work of newcomers Adapt Physical Therapy with a 9-3, 11-1 sweep on Tuesday at Creekside Baseball Complex in Parkville.
Adapt pitchers issued 22 walks combined in the two games, giving the Raiders free baserunners aplenty.
The Raiders broke in front, scoring a run on a wild pitch in the first inning, before OF Ben Walsh (Rockhurst/Johnson County CC) added a two-run triple in the second inning and DH Gavin Siegfried (Staley/Crowder CC) cranked a three-run double in the third inning for an early 6-0 lead.
RHP Chandler Ashby (Park Hill/Crowder CC) was the beneficiary, tossing four scoreless innings. He struck out five, allowing two hits and a walk before the bullpen closed the door.
The Raiders only had two hits in the nightcap, but made Adapt pay for 14 walks and two hit batters in the five-inning, run-rule win.
DH Ryan Williams (Liberty/Northwest Missouri State) crushed a three-run home run during a four-run first inning.
The Raiders added seven runs without getting a hit in the second inning. Five of the first seven batters walked and the other two were hit by pitches before three more RBI walks were issued in the frame.
Reigning runner-up Stars start strong with sweep
After reaching the Ban Johnson Collegiate League championship series last season, the Creche Innovations Stars are hungry to contend for a title again and served notice that the 2022 squad is loaded as well with a 12-5, 8-0 sweep against the KC Knights.
With RHP Luke Smith (Blue Springs/Dodge City CC) and RHP Dane Blankenship (Truman/MCC-Maple Woods) handcuffing the Knights’ lineup through five-plus innings, the Stars thundered to a 9-0 lead in the opener and never glanced back.
CF Jake Miller (Vandegrift [Texas]/Southeastern Oklahoma State), 1B Trevor Blackwell (Blue Springs/Dodge City CC), DH Riley Bown (Grain Valley/MCC-Maple Woods) and LF Corey Bradford (Park Hill/Park) delivered two RBIs apiece as the Stars’ bats shined bright.
During the nightcap, RHP Jaxon Kutch (Kearney/Baker) and RHP Jacob Rehkow (Blue Springs/KCKCC) combined for 11 strikeouts in tossing three scoreless innings each before Bown polished off the shutout.
DH Luke Moore’s (Park Hill/Johnson County CC) two-run single was the big blow during a decisive five-run second inning.
Ban Johnson Legends give Natural Baseball Academy rude welcome
Facing Natural Baseball Academy, who returns to the league this year, the Ban Johnson Legends mounted a seventh-inning rally for a 5-4 win then finished off the sweep with a 16-9 drubbing.
The Legends nearly wasted a strong outing from right-hander Kyler Barnett (Truman/Park), who struck out nine in four innings and left with the opening game knotted at 2-2.
NBA grabbed the lead in the fifth and carried a 4-3 advantage into the seventh before C Cade Meek (Park Hill South/St. Ambrose [Iowa]) plated the game-tying and game-winning runs with a shallow fly ball single into left field.
Legends bats stayed hot in the nightcap led by 1B Zayne Morrow (Park Hill/MCC-Maple Woods) — who went 4 for 5 with two doubles, four runs scored and two RBIs. OF Caleb Adams (Lansing/KCKCC) and 3B Brendyn Bard (Piper/KCKCC) also doubled twice, while DH Bryce Dye (Fort Osage/Park) homered and OF Matthew Brimacombe (Blue Valley North/UCM) socked a double and triple in the rout.
Mustangs nip Royals, complete sweep to open season
After rallying from a four-run hole in the opener, the Milgram Mustangs jumped in front early in the second game against MSBL Royals during a 5-4, 5-2 sweep.
1B Zane Ragland (Lee’s Summit North/Northwest Missouri State), 2B Cameron Stacker (Southeast/MidAmerica Nazarene) and DH Connor Morehouse (Park Hill/William Jewell) all had run-producing singles in a fourth-inning outburst as the Royals broke a scoreless deadlock in the opener.
While those were the only runs the Royals managed, it appeared as if it might be enough before the Mustangs halved the lead in the fourth, tied the game in the fifth and pulled in front in the sixth.
OF Nathan Hall (Liberty/UCM) delivered a key RBI double in the fourth, while 3B Avery Williams (Lee’s Summit West/Central Arkansas) cranked his own RBI double in the fifth. An error provided the game-winning run an inning later.
LHP John Brady (Lee’s Summit West/Benedictine) and LHP Zachary Brink (Olathe Northwest/Butler CC) each tossed three scoreless innings in the Mustangs’ come-from-behind win.
During game two, seven Royals errors — including one in allowing a four-run first inning — proved too much to overcome.
The Mustangs powered in front behind RBI doubles from 3B William Brant (Shawnee Mission East/William Jewell) and OF McClellan Cross (Park Hill/Rockhurst) along with RBI singles from OF Matt Schrick (Atchison/MCC-Maple Woods) and 1B Parker Griffith (Lee’s Summit West/Northwest Missouri State).
RHP Dominic Davies (Bishop Miege/Avila) struck out four in three perfect innings en route to the win.
Regal, BC split season-opening doubleheader
It was a tale of two games for Building Champions’ bats in a season-opening split against Regal Plastic.
BC decisively won the opener, 11-4, but Regal LHP Jacob Fickenscher (Park Hill/St. Olaf [Minnesota]) silenced the lineup in five shutout innings en route to a 2-1 win in the nightcap.
OF Nicholas Dunn (Rockhurst/San Francisco), C Sam McAleer (Blue Valley/Wichita State) and DH Phillip Dudziak (Olathe South/Phoenix CC) each had two hits, while SS Jackson Mervosh (Olathe South/St. Louis University), Dunn and Dudziak chipped in two RBIs apiece in the first game.
Mervosh and 3B Kysen Howard (Blue Valley Northwest/Colorado State-Pueblo) each had run-scoring doubles during a six-run second inning as BC seized control behind starting RHP Reid Plum (Liberty/UCM), who struck out six in a four-inning outing.
But during the second game, Fickenscher, who struck out eight and worked around five hits and two walks, outdueled BC LHP Benjamin Sundell (Liberty/Washington & Lee [Virginia]), who struck out 10 but allowed a run on two hits and four walks in four innings.
Regal went in front on OF Will Fricker’s (Park Hill South/Johnson County CC) fourth-inning RBI single, while OF DJ Suonandajie (Nanjing Dongshan [China]/Los Angeles Harbor College) stole home an inning later for the eventual game-winning run.
NKC Apartments Giants, Macaws split doubleheader
The NKC Apartments Giants blew a six-run sixth-inning lead before rallying for a 14-9 win in the opening game of a doubleheader against newcomer the MBC Academy Macaws.
But there was no soiling Macaws RHP Collin Jones (Leavenworth/UCM) in the second game, a 7-0 win for MBC Academy to earn a season-opening split.
The Giants built a 9-3 lead during the first five innings, but four walks and two hit batters combined with 2B Alex Rodriguez’s (Shawnee Mission South/Hocking [Ohio] CC) RBI single allowed the Macaws to tie the game in the sixth inning.
Two errors, DH Jake Lufft’s (Blue Springs/Rockhurst) two-run home run and OF Benjamin Jones’ (Liberty/Northwest Missouri State) RBI single powered a five-run bottom of the sixth as the Giants held on to win.
Lufft also tossed three hitless innings, allowing a run on four walks with three strikeouts, as the Giants’ starter.
During the second game, Jones struck out nine, allowing only two hits and a walk in five shutout innings. RHP Sam Owens (Shawnee Mission South/Rockhurst) finished off the Macaws’ win with two hitless shutout innings, striking out two with one walk.
Meanwhile, C Hunter Moffet (St. Thomas Aquinas/Benedictine) staked the Macaws to an early lead with a first-inning single and OF Scott Neidel (St. Joe Central/Concordia [Nebraska]) added an RBI single during a two-run second inning.
DH Seth Brown (Staley/Kaskia [Illinois] CC) and Moffet added RBI singles for insurance runs later in the game.