Butler baseball splits conference series with Seward County

Butler baseball splits conference series with Seward County

Butler baseball split a four-game series with Seward County, including a run-rule 15-5 victory on Friday during the second game of the series.

The Grizzlies dropped Friday's opener by a 7-5 score, but came back by routing the Saints 15-5 in seven innings during the second game. On Saturday, Butler came away with a 4-3 extra-inning win before losing the series finale 7-1.

With the split, Butler is now 19-26 overall and 8-16 in conference play. The Grizzlies will play at Brown Mackie College in a non-conference matchup Tuesday at 4:00 p.m., then return to conference action with a four-game road series at Colby beginning Saturday.

Game 1 — Seward County 7, Butler 5

Seward jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the second inning against Butler starter Corbin Osburn, who settled down to record three shutout innings before exiting in the sixth.

In the bottom of the third, the Grizzlies pulled within one run, as Bryant Klusener, Cory Slater and John Gardner each drove in runs.

Alex Forg'et tied the game with a solo home run to left to begin the fourth inning, then Slater put Butler up 5-4 with a solo blast to leadoff the fifth.

However, Seward would strike for three runs off reliever Drake Harper (2-2) in the sixth inning, with Judah Sweat giving the Saints the lead with a two-run single.

Klusener and Slater each had two hits to lead the Grizzlies.

Game 2 — Butler 15, Seward County 5 (7 innings)

Leading 6-5 in the bottom of the seventh, Butler scored nine runs on six hits to end the contest by run-rule.

The Grizzlies took a 3-2 lead after two innings, getting a solo home run from Hunter Aguirre in the first, then Alex Van Pelt added a two-run homer in the second.

Butler added another run in the fourth when Van Pelt scored on a passed ball, but Seward answered with two runs in the fifth to tie the contest at 4-4.

Grant Ware's RBI single to score Caleb Cox broke the tie in the bottom-half of the fifth. However the Saints responded with an RBI double by Antonio Dora.

Butler took the lead for good when Aguirre scored from third base on a groundout in the sixth.

The Grizzlies sent nine batters to the plate in the seventh before Seward recorded an out. Butler opened the inning by loading the bases on two walks and an error, then Caleb Cox scored when Javis Larson was hit with a pitch. Josh Rogers followed with a two-run single up the middle to give Butler a 9-5 lead.

After a pitching change, Aguirre drove in Larson with a single to left. After another walk and a Bryant Klusener single to load the bases again, Cory Slater drove in two runs with a single to right field.

Following a double play for the first two outs, Grant Ware hit an RBI single to center to drive in Klusner. Van Pelt then ended the game with a double to left-center to score Ware for the 15-5 win.

Aguirre led Butler in hitting, going 3-for-5 with three runs scored and two RBI, while Ware and Van Pelt also scored three runs each. Slater added a 3-for-5 performance at the plate for Butler, who finished with 14 hits.

Isaiah Montoya-Gonzales (2-2) picked up the win, going 6 1/3 innings and striking out eight hitters while giving up four earned runs on six hits.

Game 3 — Butler 4, Seward County 3 (8 innings)

Butler led 2-0 after three innings, beginning with an RBI single by Josh Rogers in the second. Hunter Aguirre followed in the third inning by scoring on a groundout.

Seward tied the game in the sixth on a leadoff solo home run by Logan Nether, then Nether added an RBI single to score Justin Graff in the seventh inning to give the Saints a 3-2 lead.

Butler sent the game into extra innings when Alex Forg'et scored on a fielder's choice.

In the eighth, pinch hitter John Gardner lined a one-out single to right field to score Klusener from second base, setting off a wild celebration.

Aguirre and Forg'et each had two hits for Butler.

Ben Ramberg (3-4) received the win in relief, throwing 1 1/3 shutout innings while allowing just one hit. Starter Travis Edgar had a strong outing, going 5 2/3 innings and giving up two runs on seven hits. Edgar finished with five strikeouts.

Game 4 — Seward County 7, Butler 1

Seward broke a scoreless tie with a three-run home run from Jared Biddy in the fifth inning. The Saints added another run on Judah Sweat's RBI double to score Logan Nether.

Butler scored its only run of the contest in the bottom of the fifth when Hunter Aguirre drove in Garrett Glass on a single to left.

Seward added a run in the sixth, then scored two insurance runs in the seventh to complete the scoring.

Butler finished with just six hits in the contest, with Bryant Klusener going 3-for-3 with a double in the loss. Hayden Schaeffer (0-2) took the loss as he allowed four runs on five hits in just 4 2/3 innings of work.