Salina, Kan (westernkansasnews.com)-Every great movie has its rising action and climax; just like every baseball season is littered with adversity-type situations and resolutions. Garden City knows this scenario all too well.
The Elite dropped all four games in the 2014 Kansas Grand Slam Tournament in Salina-falling to Ottawa 5-4, Salina 7-4, Kansas 13-3 and Millard North 19-11.
“We played maybe two innings of good baseball all weekend,” Head Coach Lyle Befort said. “But we definitely learned a lot about ourselves.”
Despite the mediocre baseball, the Elite (18-8) had their chances. In game one-they trailed Ottawa 5-3 in the bottom of the seventh when Logan Dechant led off the inning with a double. Two batters later Edgar Montoya singled him home to make it 5-4. But back-to-back flyouts ended the game.
In the second game, the Elite fell behind early, thanks to Salina’s five-run outburst in the second. Garden City responded in the top of the fifth with Thomas Solorio’s two-run double; followed up with Marcus Zapata’s RBI single and Jacob Rivas’s sacrifice fly to make it 5-4. But the rally ended when Daniel Flores popped out to third.
Salina tacked on a run in the bottom half and another in the sixth to salt it away.
In the early contest Saturday against Kansas, the Elite pulled to within a single run 4-3 in the bottom of the fifth only to watch the Mud Cats plate nine runs in the top of the sixth.
Against Millard North in the finale, the Elite grabbed an 8-2 lead following a six-run third inning. The problem: Ivan Gutierrez gave it right back in the bottom half-yielding six runs. Mario Montoya and Rivas didn’t fair any better out of the pen-surrendering 11 runs in relief.
Liberal 6, Hays 4