Buster Baseball Begins Conference Play By Sweeping Pratt

Hays, KS (westernkansasnews.com)  In a game that had bone chilling cold and where every fly ball could potentially be a homer, Garden City Community College outhit Pratt and out lasted the weather winning game one 18-7 and game two 11-8.  The teams agreed to play both games at Hays High School because the playing surface had field turf on the infield allowing for better footing after last weekend’s snow storm.

Game One Highlights

In the first game Garden City jumped out to an early 2-0 start after a throwing error from Beavers catcher Avery Booth went into leftfield trying to cut Broncbuster catcher Frankie Alvarez on the front end of a double steal.  The overthrow brought in the first Garden City run and a wild pitch from Cristian Telemaco scored the other run.

Garden City ace starting pitcher J.J. Benes struggled early.  The first seven batters reached successfully and twelve batters came to the plate scoring six runs as the Beavers took a 6-2 lead through the first inning.  From that point on, Garden City outscored Pratt 16-1 through the remainder of the game.

The Broncbusters used the power of the long ball.  Garden City cracked out six homers over the two games, five of them in game one.  Three of the five homers were two run shots.  Frankie Alvarez two run homer in the second brought GCCC to within two runs at 6-4.  Cooper Bowermaster tied it up one inning later with another two run blast off Telemaco.  

GCCC rightfielder Brooks Benson added two homers of his own.  His two run shot in the 4th gave Garden City the lead for good off Pratt reliever Garrett Staskewicz.  Benson stroked a three run homer in the 6th to cap off the team’s scoring 18-7.  Benes survived the first and worked until two outs in the fifth allowing only one run on four hits the rest of the way.  

Game Two Highlights

Not as much power for the Broncbusters in game two, but they scratched for enough runs early to hold on.  Patrick Mixon knocked in two with a double in the first inning off Pratt starting pitcher Kailen Glover.  Alvarez launched a two run homer in the second inning to make it 4-0 Broncbusters.  For Alvarez it was his second home run of the day.

Brendan Peitsmeyer threw well enough to win his second game of the year.  He allowed three homers, but two of those shots were solo blasts.  Peitsmeyer gave up for earned runs and six hits over his five innings, while striking out six. 

Garden City took control of the game with a five sixth inning capped off with a big two-run double from Bowermaster against Pratt’s sidewinding righthander Hayden Brauser.  Pratt had two in the seventh and two in the ninth.  Ethan Schlesener touched up Broncbuster closer Marcus McKinney to pull the Beavers within three before Julio Ibarra made the final out of the game.

Coach Chris Finnegan’s postgame comments

Garden City Community College improves to 10-2 overall and 2-0 in the GWAC.  Pratt drops to 1-8 overall and 0-2 in the Jayhawk West. Weather permitting Sunday both teams will return to the diamond Sunday in Pratt for another doubleheader.