The Blue Springs baseball team got a unique chance to play a team from California Wednesday.
And the Wildcats made the most of it.
Mitchell Smith set the tone by homering to start the game and Christian Garcia continued his recent torrid pace at the plate with a grand slam as the Wildcats cruised to a 16-1, three-inning mercy rule victory over Lompoc (Calif.) Cabrillo High School Wednesday afternoon at Satchel Paige Stadium in Kansas City.
Cabrillo is the high school of Kansas City Royals pitcher Danny Duffy, and Duffy flew in the team to play three different local squads, including Blue Springs.
“We have been getting better every day and it showed today,” Blue Springs coach Tim McElligott said after his team improved to 5-15 with its second straight win. “Great way to go into the Lawrence tournament (River City Classic). This was a class bunch of dudes and Danny Duffy is top shelf.”
After Smith’s leadoff homer, the Wildcats added five more runs in the first inning. Garcia’s grand slam sparked a six-run second inning and the Wildcats put it away with four runs in the third.
Garcia finished 3-for-3 with a double, the grand slam and five RBIs. Tanner Martin doubled and homered with seven RBIs, Aiden Smith was 2-for-2 with a solo home run, Trevor Blackwell was 2-for-3 with a solo shot and Payton Schmidt added two hits and two runs.
Nolan Rice, making his first start of the season, picked up the victory, allowing four hits and a walk while striking out two.
GRAIN VALLEY 14, PARK HILL SOUTH 9: Grain Valley squandered an early lead Wednesday. But the Eagles atoned for it with a seven-run fifth inning on the way to a victory over Park Hill South in the Northland Tournament.
The Eagles led 6-2 after two innings but the Panthers scored six runs in the top of the fourth inning to grab a 9-6 lead. The Eagles responded with six in the fifth and one in the sixth and held on to improve to 10-6 overall and 1-2 in the round-robin tournament.
Grain Valley pounded out 16 hits to give relief pitcher Jesse Scholtz the victory. Caden Matlon went 3-for-4 with a walk, a double, three RBIs and three runs, and Trent Flake doubled and tripled with three RBIs to lead the way.
Seth Dankenbring was 3-for-3 with an RBI and two runs, Parker Bosserman doubled and tripled with an RBI, and Christian Lynn added two hits for the Eagles.
KEARNEY 8, FORT OSAGE 6: Fort Osage slugged a pair of home runs but it wasn’t enough to get past visiting Kearney in a Northland Tournament matchup Wednesday.
Trailing 8-1, the Indians made it interesting by scoring five runs in the top of the seventh but fell just short. Sam Carlson homered and drove in three runs and Ben Long smacked a solo blast. Trey Lockard added three hits and an RBI for the Indians, who dropped to 6-11 overall and 0-3 in the round-robin tournament.