Grizzlies obliterate Red Devils in elimination game; advance to Region VI Championships in Wichita

Grizzlies obliterate Red Devils in elimination game; advance to Region VI Championships in Wichita

Story by Wyatt Ebersole

After a pair of defensive battles in the first two games, the Butler offense exploded in the third and final game of the series, plating runs early and often against the Red Devils on their way to a huge 22-8 win. With the win, the Grizzlies advance to the Region VI Elite Eight and will play on next Wednesday at 10AM against #6 seeded Fort Scott. The loss for Allen ends their year at 25-29 overall.

Despite the Grizzly offense being dominant, it was once the Red Devils who scored first, hitting an RBI single into left to take a 1-0 lead through the top of the first. This lead was very short lived, as Hayden Dyer smashed a two-run homer over the fence in center, and then Markus Hamre added a run on a single to centerfield. Brock Toothaker followed that with an RBI single of his own, before Cole Murrell sent a ball way over the wall in right center to give the Grizzlies a 6-1 lead after the first inning. The Grizzlies took complete control of the game in the bottom of the second, scoring a monster ten runs in the second inning alone to take a 16-1 lead. Brock Kuehler walked in a run, Hamre hit a three-RBI double to right, Toothaker hit another RBI singlea and then scored on a wild pitch later in the inning. Dyer brought in another with an RBI single up the middle, then Alan Benhardt walked in another run and Garrett Fager came in to score soon after on a wild pitch. The final run of the inning came the same as the first one did, Kuehler drew a bases-loaded walk, before a double-play mercifully ended the inning. After starter Bill Humphrey tossed a three-pitch inning in the third, Dyer brought four more runs home with a towering grand slam to left in the bottom half giving the Grizzlies a 20-1 lead after three. The Red Devils managed to plate seven runs over the next two innings, but it wasn't near enough and the Grizzlies picked up the win in game three and the series 2-1.

Dyer was 3-4 in the game with seven RBIs and two homers, highlighted by his grand slam in the third.

Murrell was 3-3 with two-RBI, highlighted by his two-run shot in the bottom of the first.

As mentioned, the Grizzlies escape elimination, and will play #6 seed Fort Scott on Wednesday in Wichita at Eck Stadium. 

NOTES: The Grizzlies advance past the first round in the Region VI Playoffs for the fourth straight season…The 20 runs the Grizzlies scored is their most runs in a game since April 13th, 2021 in a 21-14 win against Neosho…This was the most runs the Grizzlies have scored in a Region VI Playoff game since at least 2012, breaking the previous high of 15 runs against Fort Scott in the 2021 sub-regional...Hayden Dyer's seven RBIs in the game is the most by any Grizzly in a single game this season and is the most since Josh Cameron had seven RBIs in that aformentioned win over Neosho