CLARENDON, Texas – In a battle of explosive bats, it was the Clarendon Bulldogs that came out on top over the Seward County Saints (18-23), putting up the most runs a team has scored against the Saints in over 15 years, winning 27-16.
Blake Hale picked up the start, but did not receive an out before getting pulled, giving up five runs off three hits and two walks. Brayden Conner (0-4) stepped in for Hale and didn't fare much better. Conner gave up 10 runs off 12 hits in three innings pitched. Dylan Paul (1.0 IP), Jacob Nielsen (1.2 IP) and Braeden Gould (0.1 IP) were the final pitchers in the game, giving up the remaining 12 runs off a combined 10 hits.
Seward managed 16 hits with Benny Ayala (3), Cole Bergdall (3), Cruz Shope (3), Ben Tsui (2), and Brooks Williams (2) each finishing with a multi-hit day. Shope led the Saints with four RBI, while Bergdall (3 RBI), Ayala (2 RBI), Tsui (2 RBI), and Williams (2 RBI) finished with multiple RBI.
The Saints got on board first with a three run first inning. Tsui knocked in two runs with a line drive double to left field before Shope drove in Tsui with a single to left field to make it 3-0.
The Bulldogs struck back quickly with their first six batters reaching base before the Saints recorded an out. Through the first six batters, Clarendon scored five runs off a double, triple and home run. An RBI single was sandwiched between two outs before the Bulldogs scored another five runs before the Saints ended the inning to make the score 11-3.
Seward jumped back on top in the top of the 2nd with a 10-run inning of their own. Bergdall hit a one-out two-run home run to make it 11-5, but the Saints scored the remaining eight runs with two outs. Three singles, a double and an error were responsible for the Saints recapturing a 13-11 lead, but it was short lived.
Following a leadoff out, two singles, followed by a two-run double tied the game for the Bulldogs. A two-run home run gave Clarendon their final lead of the game, as the Saints failed to get back in reach.
Ward led off the third with a double before Caraballo drove him in with a single to make the score 15-14, but the Bulldogs kept the Saints off the board again until the seventh inning, while they extended their lead.
A two-run home run in the bottom of the fourth extended the Bulldogs lead to 17-14. Clarendon followed up the fourth inning with an eight-run fifth inning. The first four batters reached in the fifth, scoring just one-run, but with the bases loaded, it was too much for the Saints to end the threat.
A single and a double with the next two-at bats pushed the lead to 21-14. A walk followed the double before a three-run home run pushed the Clarendon lead to nine. The Bulldogs scored their final two runs in the bottom of the sixth with a two-run home run to put their total at 27 runs on the day.
The Saints put two on the board in the top of the seventh from two singles, but it wasn't enough to prevent the game from ending in the run-rule, losing 27-16.
After a brief non-conference game, the Saints will be back in Jayhawk Conference play on Thursday at 3:00 p.m. hosting Dodge City at Brent Gould Field.