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Monarchs strike big early, rout Dirtbags


By Brad Hallier

The Hutchinson Monarchs scored seven first-inning runs Saturday, and then cruised the rest of the way in beating the Dirtbags 9-1 at Hobart-Detter Field on the team’s annual Cancer Awareness Night.

More than 400 fans attended the game and were treated to early fireworks from the Monarchs’ bats. Cooper Wesslund got the scoring started with a run-scoring single that brought home Camden Johnson. Cooper Harris followed with an RBI single, and Jaden Gustafson next scored on a wild pitch, making it a 3-0 game.

The Monarchs were just getting started. Sam Wiese hit a rocket that the Dirtbags pitcher caught, but the ball was then thrown away for an error, and Harris scored.

Blake Bradford’s RBI single scored Jarrett Flaggert, and Bradford later scored on another wild pitch, and when Wesslund walked with the bases loaded, the Monarchs led 7-0.

Bradford tacked on another RBI the next inning on a sacrifice fly, and Gustafson brought in the final run in the sixth inning on a groundout.

Jace Miner worked six strong innings on the mound in earning the win for the Monarchs, giving up a run on two hits.

The Monarchs will take two days off before playing Tuesday at Hobart-Detter Field against the Derby Twins.

Sunday, 10 Monarchs will play in the Jayhawk Collegiate League’s all-star game at Riverfront Stadium in Wichita. The Monarchs on the roster include Flaggert, Wesslund, Johnson, Gustafson, Miner, Brett Smajstrla, Brock Rod, Kamden Edge, Reed Scott and Carson Cornelius. The game is slated to begin at 6 p.m.