Post 366 takes third at tourney


Despite his dive, Dillon Liles is forced out on a fielder?s choice ground out in the second inning of Hills?boro?s 17-2 win over Lyons June 9.Andrew Ottoson / Free Press

The Hillsboro Legion Post 366 baseball team went 1-2 at its annual round robin tournament, placing third among four teams competing.

Post 366 lost to Salina 8-6 in its opener, lost to Abilene 9-0 on Saturday night, and bounced back with a 14-3 win over Lyons on Sunday. A 7-run third inning against Jace Francka powered Salina?s victory.

Post 366 sputtered both offensively and defensively in support of Tyler Ediger?s start against Abilene.

But against Lyons, Post 366 erupted for 13 runs in the first inning to net a straightforward win for pitcher Adam Matz.

Abilene posted a 3-0 record and remains undefeated in 2009. Salina placed second with a 2-1 record, and Lyons did not win a tournament game.

Lyons?The Legion Post 366 trailed Lyons 1-0 following a sacrifice fly in the top of the first June 9 at Memorial Field, but Hillsboro commanded the rest of the evening. A 9-run bottom of the first staked Post 366 starting pitcher Jacob Fish to an ample lead. Most of the damage was self-inflicted by the Lyons defense, which allowed runners to advance on three infield hits, two walks, a hit-by-pitch and a 2-base throwing error before recording a single out.

Batting with a 5-1 lead, Fish slapped a 2-run single through shortstop. After two passed balls moved him to third, Fish scored when Adam Matz reached on an error to bring up leadoff batter Aaron Bina for the second time.

Bina?s fielder?s choice grounder made Matz the first out. Two Hillsboro strikeouts ended the inning.

Fish struck out the first batter of the next inning, but walked three Lyons batters to create the only major jam he would face all evening.

The free pass he issued to Jordan Buckman made it 9-2 with the bases loaded and one out in the top of the second. Fish booked the second out via infield fly popup and ended the threat by coaxing a weak grounder out of Lyons leadoff hitter Carlos Mu?oz.

Hillsboro did not score in the bottom of the second, and Fish limited Lyons to four batters in the top of the third.

Bina was beaned with one out in the bottom of the third, sparking a rally that consisted mostly of a succession of free passes: two more Post 366 batters were plunked, another walked, and Hillsboro led 11-2.

Legion hitters then started turning on poorly thrown strikes, with Chris Couts clearing the bases with a double to deep left field, and Fish following with an RBI double down the left field line.

Rustyn Kerbs started the top of the fourth, issuing consecutive walks before notching a groundout and two strikeouts. With two down and two runners on in the bottom of the fourth, Ediger crushed the first pitch he saw less than a foot foul of the left field line. He was hit by the third pitch of the at bat, loading the bases for Dillon Liles. Liles ended the game by mercy rule when he tagged a 2-run single into short left field.

Jace Francka started the second game and, with relief from Edwards and Matz, combined for a 10-0 win in five innings.

Coming?Legion Post 366 hosted Marion Tuesday and visits Abilene Thursday. Post 366 is slated to host Hesston June 23. All are 6 p.m. starts.

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