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NEKL Legion Baseball Recap - June 30th - July 2nd
By Mike Smith
Copyright: MSC Sports

2017 Northeast Kansas League Legion Baseball Standings - click here

2017 KNZA McDonald's "Player of the Game" selections - click here

103.9 KNZA Legion Baseball Broadcast Schedule - click here

Zone Tournament Assignments -- Junior Legion A, Senior Legion AA, Senior Legion AAA

A Zone 1 Tournament (at Topeka) bracket - click here

AA Zone 1 Tournament (at Sabetha) bracket - click here

Legion baseball season rolled along over the weekend with action for five of the seven Northeast Kansas League team. 

Back on Friday, Oskaloosa took on Ottawa in non-league play and split the doubleheader losing game one 17-10 but bouncing back with a 5-4 walk-off win in game two. On Saturday Sabetha took down Leavenworth in twinbill picking up a 10-2 five inning win and 9-1 victory, also. Sunday was scheduled to feature a pair of doubleheaders with NEKL teams but only one took place as the Corning at Leavenworth doubleheader was cancelled. Seneca hosted Doniphan County in the other action and Seneca picked up the sweep 7-0 and 7-6, winning game two in walk-off fashion. 

The legion baseball season continues on Monday, July 3rd as Oskaloosa will host Chase County in non-league action. 

Seneca Takes Two Over Doniphan County

After a split of their doubleheader earlier in the season in Wathena, Seneca played host to Doniphan County on Sunday and snagged a pair of wins claiming the 7-0 and 7-6 victories. 

Game one was dominated by Seneca as they limited Doniphan County to five base runners and only one that got past first base in the contest. Seneca got on the board in the bottom of the second as a walk and hit batter got two guys on and Luke Reitz then blasted a three-run homer to make to 3-0. The lead grew for Seneca in the fourth as Seneca sent nine of the ten in the order to the plate and scored four runs on four hits, including a two RBI double by Dalton Hiltibrand and RBI singles by Billy Mitchell and Reitz. Down to their final three outs Doniphan County got a two-out double by Zeb Speer in the top of the seventh but could not score and Seneca won 7-0. 

Hiltibrand tossed a complete game shutout to earn the win giving up just three hits and two walks, while striking out 15 and had a two RBI double. Reitz led the Seneca offense going 2-3 with a three-run homer, two runs scored and four RBI's. Both Hiltibrand and Reitz earned McDonald's "Player of the Game" honors on KNZA. 

In the loss Doniphan County got hits from Reid Greaser, Speer and Brock Blair, while Speer worked three and one-third innings as the starter. 

Both teams had some early offense in game two as Doniphan County plated four runs in the top of the first on two walks, three hits and a pair of RBI groundouts, but Seneca answered with four bottom of the first. Using five walks, a hit batter and a two-run homer by Trevor Holthaus Seneca tied the game at 4-4 after one frame. It remained tied until Doniphan County took the lead with a run in the fourth and added another in the fifth off a solo homer by Chris Winkel to lead 6-4. In the bottom of the fifth Holthaus delivered again for Seneca this time with a two-out two RBI single to tie the game at 6-6. The game remained tied entering the bottom of the seventh and Seneca with a walk, single and intentional walk worked the bases loaded with one-out. Doniphan County induced a groundball to third base and went home with the throw but it was off line and the winning run scored for Seneca to earn the 7-6 walk-off win. 

Greaser, Speer and Blair led Doniphan County going 2-5, 2-4 and 2-3 offensively, while Winkel was 1-2 with a homer, two walks and two runs scored. Franken started the game going one and two-thirds innings while Greaser pitched the rest of the contest. 

Paul Enneking tossed five innings as the starter and Derek Uphaus earned the win in relief tossing the final two frames. Holthaus led the Seneca offense going 2-4 with a two-run homer, four RBI, a walk and run scored, while Hiltibrand was 2-3 with two walks and three runs scored. 

The pair of wins move Seneca to 11-6 on the season, while Doniphan County falls to 14-6 on the year. 

Sabetha Sweeps Leavenworth In Lopsided Games

Solid offense helped carry Sabetha to a pair of wins on Saturday at home over Leavenworth as two Sabetha players made their pitching debuts in 10-2 five inning win and a 9-1 victory. 

Game one Leavenworth took the initial lead in the contest but Sabetha answered with three runs in the second and broke the game open behind a seven run third. A pair of errors helped the Sabetha cause in the seven-run third with a two-run single by Kyle Grimm highlighting the innings. On the mound, Braden Argabright made his first career Legion start by pitching all five innings allowing only three hits and only four runners overall to reach base. At the plate Brett Stallbaumer led the Sabetha 12-hit attack by collecting three hits, while Brandon Brownlee, Seth Burdick and Grimm each had two hits.

Game two saw Riley Herrmann make his first start of the season and had a no-hitter for 4.1 innings before allowing a Jacob Emmerson single in a 9-1 victory. Herrmann navigated around five walks and a pair of hit batters for the complete game win. Just like game one Leavenworth led 1-0 after the first but Sabetha and an answer scoring a pair of runs in both the second and third innings before tallying five runs in the fourth on only one hit. Brett Stallbaumer led Sabetha at the plate going 2-3 in the contest and completing his day with five-hits. 

The wins propel Sabetha to a 20-5 record on the year, while Leavenworth fell to just 1-16 on the season. 

Oskaloosa Splits Home Doubleheader With Ottawa

Oskaloosa took a step outside of the NEKL and hosted Ottawa for a doubleheader on Friday and split the doubleheader against the fellow AAA legion team falling 17-10 in game one, but winning game two 5-4 in walk-off fashion. 

Both teams plated a run in the first inning of game one but a four-run top of the third that included a homer for Ottawa gave them the lead and Oskaloosa was playing catchup the rest of the contest. Ottawa extended the lead with four more runs in the top of the fourth but Oskaloosa matched that in the bottom of the fourth highlighted by a three-run homer by Hunter Reed. A run in the fifth and four again in the sixth had Ottawa up 14-5 entering the bottom of the sixth but Oskaloosa fought back scoring five with a Nathan Buss homer run leading the way. The runs continued to come for Ottawa as they scored three more in the top of the seventh and held Oskaloosa in the bottom of the inning to secure the 17-10 win. 

Reed and Buss each had a multi-hit game with a home run and three RBI's, while Tate Swank, Dawson Gatzemeyer and Cooper Thurston each tallied a multi-hit contest, also as game featured a combined 30 hits. 

Game two needed extra innings to decide the winner as Tucker Sherretts drew a walk in the bottom of the ninth to bring in the winning run and give Oskaloosa the 5-4 win. Ottawa took the initial lead with a run in the top fourth but Oskaloosa plated two in the bottom of the inning to lead 2-1 after four. Lead swung back to Ottawa with two runs in the fifth and they tacked on another in the seventh to lead 4-2. In the bottom of the seventh Oskaloosa took advantage of an error and ultimately tied the game with two runs and forced extra innings and the run in the bottom of the ninth lifted Oskaloosa to the 5-4 win. 

The split moves Oskaloosa to 11-8 on the season. 

Top 5 Kanzaland Sports Moments of 2017 - Top 5's in Different Sports
2017 Kanzaland American Legion Baseball NEKL All-League Team
AA Legion Baseball State Tournament - Doniphan County Loses Tough Elimination Game to End Season
AA Legion Baseball State Tournament - Doniphan County Loses Heartbreaker In Winner's Bracket Game
AAA Legion Baseball State Tournament - Oskaloosa & Leavenworth Wrap Up State Performances
AA Legion Baseball State Tournament - Doniphan County Wins Opening Round
AA Legion Baseball State Tournament - First Round Moved to Thursday
AA Legion Baseball Zone Tournament - Doniphan Beats Sabetha to Head to State for Fourth Straight Year
AA Legion Baseball Zone Tournament - Doniphan County Tops Seneca & Marysville Handles Sabetha
AA Legion Baseball Zone Tournament - Seneca & Doniphan County Stay Alive With Wins
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