GIFFORD -- For the Buckley Dutchmasters' Nathan Walker, his second RBI hit of game one of Sunday's doubleheader against the Royal Giants did not come without adversity.
After Drew Schrodt doubled to lead off the top of the ninth inning, Walker sent him home with a two-base hit to center field to extend Buckley's lead to 11-5.
As he approached first base, however, Walker tripped and fell on the bag. He managed, however, to make it to second base.
“I got sniped at first base and fell pretty hard," Walker said. "I’m just glad I got to second (base), though.”
En route to helping the Dutchmasters win the opening game 11-5 over the Giants, Walker finished the contest quadrupling his hit total through Buckley's first four games of the season by hitting 4-for-5.
“It feels good," Walker said. "I had been struggling before today. It felt pretty good to get out of that slump.”
Buckley (4-2) went into the seventh inning of game one trailing 5-3. Royal (3-3) claimed a 4-0 lead in a second inning that included a two-RBI double by Blake Hoveln and a run-scoring single by Casey Dillman.
After Jay Eshleman and Jake Stewart each hit a one-out single to right field for Buckley in the top of the third inning, Evan Regez lined another base hit to right field to send both runners across home plate to cut the Dutchmasters' deficit to 4-2.
Dillman then singled to left field with two outs in the bottom of the third inning to extend Royal's lead to 5-2. In the top of the sixth inning, Schrodt reached base on an error with two outs and Walker singled to right field before Quinton Hatfill sent Schrodt home via an infield single to make the score 5-3.
The Dutchmasters then scored five runs in the top of the seventh inning to take an 8-3 lead.
Eshleman singled to right field, Stewart lined a base hit to left field and Regez reached base on a bunt single to load the bases with nobody out.
After Eshleman crossed home plate on a passed ball, Josh Krumwiede sent Stewart home with a line-drive single to left field. Mark Miller -- the catcher Regez's courtesy runner -- scored the go-ahead run on an error on the sequence of Krumwiede's hit.
With two outs, Walker singled to right field to send Krumwiede home before Hatfill sent Walker across home plate with a line-drive double to right field.
“We bounced back pretty well," Dutchmasters manager Ryne Scheiwe said.
Buckley extended its lead with two more runs in the top of the eighth inning.
Eshleman hit a leadoff single to right field before Stewart doubled to left field.
After Regez singled to center field, Stewart scored on a double-play ground ball hit by Krumwiede.
The Dutchmasters finished game one producing 18 hits, including 3-for-5 efforts from Regez and Eshleman, a 3-for-6 performance by Stewart and a 2-for-5 outing from Hatfill.
“We had some big innings – hits after hits after hits," Walker said. "It was a fun game. A lot of good stuff happened.”
Scott Runyon started on the mound for Buckley, allowing five earned runs on eight hits, one walk and three hit batsmen with three strikeouts through 4 1/3 innings.
“He battled," Scheiwe said. "He got down early and said, ‘Once I figure it out, I just need you to ride me a little bit. I’ll give you some more innings.’”
Tyler Jones allowed no runs on three hits and two walks with nine strikeouts through five innings.
“Our bullpen came in and shut it down," Scheiwe said. "Jones came in and threw well for us. We had a solid outing from him.”
Royal's Colton Carr pitched a four-hit shutout en route to leading the Giants to a 2-0 victory.
“A split’s a split. We’d like to get two, but we didn’t come out really aggressively in game two offensively, Scheiwe said. "We couldn’t string them all together – we got baserunners, but just couldn’t get that hit that we needed. It’ll come around. Our guys have a good approach at the plate. Pretty much everybody’s played higher-level baseball, so they know what they’re doing up there. It’ll come with time.”
Trey Russell singled to lead off the top of the second inning and Marty Mennenga drew a walk to put runners in scoring position following a Hatfill groundout. Tanner Russell lined out to center field to leave the runners stranded.
After Buckley turned a double play to end the bottom of the second inning, Stewart reached base on an error with one out in the top of the third before stealing second base and reaching third base on a passed ball. Krumwiede drew a walk before Trey Russell flied out to center field for the third out.
In the bottom of the fourth inning, Hoveln drew a walk and Roberto Gonzalez hit a single to center field. With two outs, Carr singled on a line drive that dropped onto the center-field grass despite a diving effort by the centerfielder Tanner Russell, sending Hoveln and Thomas Wolken across home plate.
“There could have been a play made, but it was a tough ball," Scheiwe said. "Sometimes, it bounces your way, but sometimes they don’t.”
Eshleman and Regez each singled to put runners on first and second base for Buckley in the top of the fifth inning with two outs, but Krumwiede flied out to center field.
Mennenga doubled with two outs in the top of the sixth inning, but Hatfill grounded out in the next at-bat.
Andy Davis pitched a complete game for Buckley, striking out four batters and walking two while allowing two runs -- one earned -- on seven hits.
Royal almost scored another run in the bottom of the sixth inning as Carr doubled to center field with two outs and Wolken on first base, but Wolken was tagged out by Regez via throws from Tanner Russell and Eshleman.
"(Davis) threw well. He threw strikes," Scheiwe said. "A couple of guys got some good swings on him.”
The Dutchmasters will play at home against Gifford-Flatville in next Sunday's doubleheader at 1 p.m.
“We’ll get back out and try to get two (wins),” Scheiwe said.
Buckley Dutchmasters 11, Royal Giants 5
BUCK 002 001 521 -- 11 18 1
ROY 041 000 000 -- 5 11 3
Buckley pitching -- Scott Runyon, 4.1 IP, 8 H, 5 ER, 3 K, BB. Tyler Jones, 5 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 9 K, 2 BB.
Royal pitching -- Wilson, 6.2 IP, 13 H, 8 R, 6 ER, 0 K, BB. Schluter, 1.1 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 K, 0 BB. Wolken, IP, 2 H, ER, 0 K, BB.
Buckley hitting -- Jake Stewart 3-6, 2B, RBI, 3 R. Evan Regez 3-5, 2 RBIs. Josh Krumwiede 1-5, RBI, R. Trey Russell 1-4. Drew Schrodt 1-5, 2B, 2 R. Nathan Walker 4-5, 2B, 2 RBIs, R. Quinton Hatfill 2-5, 2B, 2 R. Jay Eshleman 3-5, 3 R. Mark Miller R.
Royal hitting -- Flowers R, 2 BB. Rigsby 1-5. Hoveln 2-3, 2B, 2 RBIs. Wolken 2-5, 2 R. Meredith 3-5. Carr 1-4, RBI. Dillman 2-4, 2 RBIs. Berry R.
Royal Giants 2, Buckley Dutchmasters 0
BUCK 000 000 0 -- 0
ROY 000 200 x -- 2
W -- Carr, 7 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 5 K, 2 BB. L -- Andy Davis, 6 IP, 7 H, 2 R, ER, 4 K, 2 BB.
Buckley (4-2) -- Evan Regez 1-3. Trey Russell 1-3. Marty Mennenga 1-2, 2B. Jay Eshleman 1-3.
Royal (3-3) -- Flowers 1-2. Hoveln R. Gonzalez 1-3. Wolken 2-3, R. Carr 2-3, RBI. Dillman 1-2.