Eudora’s bats heat up; Rebels get three wins
During the course of a hot and humid weekend, the Midwest Rebels saw fit to bring their bats to Ottawa and raise the temperature a little more.
The team racked up 32 runs over the three day, four-game tournament, which was good enough for a 3-1 record and a second-place finish.
Game one took place Friday night and was not the best way the team would have liked to start. The tournament opened with a 10-1 setback to the Harley Davidson Orioles.
For head coach Phil Hannon, it might have been a matter of the team not being able to get into gear the first night.
"I think it took a little while for the guys to get going," Hannon said. "We struggled a little bit and got beat around."
The loss, however, didn't carry over into Saturday's games as the Rebels' bats added a little more heat to the already sticky day.
The team played two games in the afternoon and gladly showed up for both.
In game one, the Rebels took care of the Missouri Bulldogs with a 12-3 romp. Pitcher Ryan Jorgensen turned a rough outing into a standup performance, which allowed the offense to come alive.
"He (Jorgensen) really pitched a gem," Hannon said. "He started out a little slow but really came around, settled down and gave us a chance to win."
On the offensive side, one of the hottest bats on the day came from Eudora's Kyle Brouhard.
The senior-to-be delivered a 4-for-4 performance that included three home runs.
In Saturday's second game, the Rebels delivered a repeat performance, this time against Chanute.
The 13-3 clobbering was highlighted by a gutsy pitching performance from former Eudora player Paul Smith. It was an outing that mirrored Jorgensen's earlier in the day.
"Paul really went out and battled," Hannon said. "He got into a little trouble early, but he stayed tough and also had some great help from his defense."
On Sunday the Rebels faced off against some familiar faces -- the Louisburg Wildcats. This contest proved to be the closest of the weekend as the Rebels outlasted their regular season Frontier League opponents 6-4.
Through the combined efforts on the mound of Daren Parker and Eudora's Joe Kaup, the Rebels held the Wildcats at bay despite a two-run home run late.
Eudora regular season first-baseman Chad Griffin, who joined the Rebels this weekend after a stint with the Kansas City Sluggers, helped out his pitchers with a late inning shot that cleared the center field fence with no doubts.
"Chad's such a great player," Hannon said. "He has so much talent that we just hope he enjoys playing with us."
The Rebels withstood a scare in the final inning from the Wildcats as a Joe Kaup pitch sailed deep center, threatening to become a three-run game winner.
Rebels center fielder Jeremy Wright glided over, however, to make the catch and secure the second-place finish.
The finish at Ottawa helped reinforce what the Rebels are about this year and in previous years.
"They're all a great bunch of guys, who give everything they have for the team," Hannon said. "As coaches we're trying to get these guys ready for college, and a weekend like this helps them try and understand what they need to do to get ready for that level.