By BRETT MARSHALL
LAKIN — Leave it to Mother Nature to mess up a good baseball doubleheader.
Class 3A rivals Scott City and Lakin already had the twinbill postponed by inclement weather on April 3.
The visiting Beavers played spoilers in the opening game, notching a hard-fought 4-3 victory over the Broncs, the No. 5-ranked team in Kansas.
Game 2 was halted by lightning after a 30-minute delay and the teams scoreless entering the bottom of the third. The game will not be rescheduled.
The Broncs, who were saddled with just their second loss of the season, struggled putting any semblance of an offense together in the narrow loss. And it had coach Steve Davidson scratching his head afterward.
"We've just been leaving lots of runners on in most of the games and we're definitely not hitting the ball as well as we have the last couple of years," said Davidson, whose team is now 9-2. "We didn't hit the ball well enough (3 singles) and Jordan (starting pitcher Rosales) struggled throwing strikes. They had some timely hits, and we didn't. We've been a little inconsistent with that this season."
Scott City coach Neil Baker was pleased with what he saw from his team, which had demonstrated a lack of consistency through the first half of the season, especially getting timely hits to drive in clutch runs.
"After the first inning, I thought we really did a good job of adjusting," Baker said after watching his team fall behind 2-0 when Lakin plated a pair of runs without benefit of a hit. A walk to leadoff batter Jarett Sauer, a throwing error allowing Shane Davidson to reach safely put runners on second and third for the Broncs.
Groundouts by Kevin Dasenbrock and Bryant Miller scored the two runs and it appeared the Broncs were off to a solid start.
The Beavers scratched out one run in their half of the second when Tyler Hess and Austin Habiger drew walks and then Hess scored on an RBI single by Colton Ratzlaff.
Scott City grabbed the lead with two runs in the top of the third. Matt Zilla got things started with a single, Jeremy Clinton and Drew Kite reached on consecutive walks before Hess delivered a 2-run double to right, making it 3-2.
"I thought we showed a lot of discipline at the plate early, drew some walks, got a couple of stolen bases and Tyler got the big hit," Baker said of his team's effort.
Lakin tied the game with a run in the fourth when Logan Litton walked and Reno Armstrong singled to right, with Litton advancing to third. Armstrong ended up on second when Scott City tried to throw out Litton. Chandon Moreno had an RBI sacrifice fly to center, scoring Litton to tie the game at 3.
It didn't take the Beavers long to regain the lead as they scored what proved to be the winning run in their half of the fifth. Hess led off with his second double of the game, moved to third on a wild pitch and then came home on Austin Habiger's ground out.
The final two innings proved frustrating for the Broncs, as leadoff hitter Miller was straned at third in the sixth, and then in the seventh, they loaded the bases with Miller at the plate. The team's best hitter for the past two seasons then bounced out on a grounder to relief pitcher Brett O'Neil to end the game.
"It would be one of the better games we've played and gives us something to build on down the road," Baker said of the narrow victory. "Lakin's really good and now we know that we can play right there with them."
For Davidson, it was back to the drawing board as they were to be back on the diamond today at 4 p.m. with a doubleheader at home against Syracuse, the other top team in the Hi-Plains League.
"Scott City's a very good team, very athletic," Davidson said. "We've got to do a better job of executing and we just didn't get the job done tonight. But not finishing the second game, probably saves us some arms for the next several games."
Scott City was slated to travel to Colby today for a 4 p.m. doubleheader.
Scott City 012 010 0 -- 4 5 2
Lakin 200 100 0 -- 3 3 0
SC--Kite, B. O'Neil (5) and Zilla, Eggleston (5); L--Rosales, Swank (4) and Litton. WP--Kite (2-2), LP--Rosales. LOB--Scott City 8, Lakin 7. 2B--SC (Hess 2).